Reprieve for marionette spectacle

The Giants have had a stay of execution.

Organisers have been given one more week to drum up funding for the Anzac-themed massive marionette street spectacle it plans to open the Perth International Arts Festival next year.

French producer Royal De Luxe has postponed a deadline for the Festival to commit to staging the Giants to commemorate the Anzac centenary next year. The Festival is $2 million short of the $5.7 million it needs for the three-day puppet parade.

Festival artistic director Jonathan Holloway said he had been overwhelmed by the public support since _The West Australian _revealed on Monday that Perth could miss out on being the land of the Giants.

But that enthusiasm had not translated yet into any rescue by a financial white knight, he said.

“I think we have brought about a week’s grace. That is the most we could have hoped for.”
About 70 per cent of the budget would be spent in WA on such things as accommodation, crane hire, crew payments and security.

“If somebody came forward and said we would provide the freight from Europe or the 100 airfares, or just over a month’s accommodation, that would be terrific,” Mr Holloway said. “We don’t just need cash.”

The 10m-tall puppets would depict the story of a girl in the Breaksea Island lighthouse off Albany who relayed messages to troopships before their departure for Gallipoli.

Returned and Services League WA president Graham Edwards has described the proposal as exciting, visionary and innovative.

The West Australian

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