Watch: Paper Windmill Theatre to Debut in Budapest for City’s 150th Anniversary

  • 1 Jun 2023 4:41 PM
Watch: Paper Windmill Theatre to Debut in Budapest for City’s 150th Anniversary
Taiwan’s very own Paper Windmill Theatre is going to Europe. The beloved children’s performance troupe will put on a show in Budapest, Hungary, to celebrate the city’s 150th anniversary.

 It will perform a uniquely Taiwanese production that combines glove puppets, Taiwanese opera, and martial arts.

The troupe aims not only to introduce Taiwan to the world, but also to bring joy to young Hungarians and Ukrainian refugees in the city.

Puppet show meets Taiwanese opera in this exciting production by Paper Windmill Theatre.

“Norza: The Adventure to the Dragon Palace” will be heading to Europe mid-June.

The performance on 20 & 21 June in Budapest is in Chinese with Hungarian and English subtitles.

The program was organized by the General Association of Chinese Culture from Taiwan as part of the cultural exchange series "Taiwan in Europe - Culture Touring" and will be performed by the Paperwindmill Theatre Company.

“Norza” is a tutelary god for children. He is also the most rewritten Taiwanese legend among creatives. This story talks about how a little boy, Norza, becomes a hero protecting people from evil using empathy, courage, imagination, and wisdom.

One day, Norza is at the beach with a friend. They accidentally meet the turtle brothers, who are out kidnapping children for dinner on the Dragon King’s order. To save his friend, Norza travels down to the dragon palace with his born incredible strength and courage to seek justice.

He defeats Dragon King’s most loved third son. The prince is crying in pain and yelling, “cramps,” which sounds like “pull the tendon” in Chinese. Norza, to help relieve the prince’s pain, mistakenly pulls the “dragon tendon.” Now, Norza is in big trouble. How can he resolve this conflict peacefully?

“Norza – The Adventure to the Dragon Palace” was performed in Mannheim, Germany (1990). The critic at Mannheimer Morgen wrote, “…switching between puppets and real humans on stage creates excitement and surprises for the audience. Fascinating kung fu armory martial arts tells a poetic and creative story.”

Paper Windmill revived the show in 2022. Besides the traditional glove puppetry and the live performance, Norza has also combined traditional arts like Taiwanese Ba Jia Jiang (The Eight Generals) steps and Bei Guan Music. With the help of digital technology and modern theatrical creativities, the show layers 3D animation and mesmerizing lighting, turning the stage into a painting.

The line between reality and virtuality is blurred on stage, carrying the audience thousands of miles away in one second.

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