Original article and photography by Aja Marneweck – Olifantland Creative Director

It has been a powerful two and a half weeks here in the Tradouw, the Valley of the Women, learning not only what it means to inhabit the sound, vocalisations, movements and characteristics of elephants, but about the absolute necessity of communal sensitivity and awareness when we work with puppetry. With the amazing puppetry trainer Craig Leo at my side and composer Simon Kohler guiding us, and our team of 14 super-puppeteers, we managed to replicate and develop the amazing rumbles, trumpets

and whooshes of these resonant giants. Then we merged mechanics and meaning, adapting what we thought we knew into Adrian’s magnificent kinetic frameworks, slowly working towards bringing energetic flesh and life to the ellies. We also connected back to the basics of what it means to trust and follow the matriarch, walking in nature and listening deeply, as Elephants do- looking forward to what the next two weeks bring,



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