The West

Clever with the rubbish
Canadian performer Jeff Achtem. Picture: Nic Ellis/The West Australian

Jeff Achtem enjoys living in the shadows.

The Canadian clown and puppeteer is one of the hits at Fringe World this year with Swamp Juice at the PICA Performance Space.

FRINGE WORLD 2014: Full coverage |

"It is just a simple cartoon story that takes place in a swamp and you meet all these silly characters in a Dr Seuss-South Park kind of way," he said.

Achtem, on his fourth visit to Perth, turns rubbish and bits and pieces into fanciful creatures thanks to sticky-tape and glue, a spotlight, a bedsheet and his own wild imagination.

"When I go through Customs, if they look in the bag and it just seems like something you wouldn't even take to the op-shop," he said.

Much of the show's appeal came from the audience seeing his contortions in front of the light to make the shapes on screen, he said.

He found it hard to believe how fast the fringe had grown. "It shows that there is clearly a thirst for it."

Hot weather meant audiences were thin at the daytime family attractions yesterday but ticket sales were strong for the evening shows.

Venues at the Pleasure Garden and the Perth Cultural Centre have had an average capacity of 70 per cent, with some sell-out shows.

Box-office problems were ironed out after some delays on Friday night. Director Amber Hasler said patrons were being encouraged to come at least an hour before their show to have time to collect tickets and enjoy a meal and a drink.

The West Australian

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