The Bewonderment Machine

A Bird in the Hand Theatre

Family, Installation, Music/Sound, Puppetry

About The Bewonderment Machine

The Bewonderment Machine is an artist-built cycle-powered carousel, a kinetic public sculpture and a magical journey for small children.

Visually, this is a quirky dreamscape, combining found objects, puppetry, machinery and music. With riding space for up to 10, this is also a miniature theatrical flight of the imagination, empowering the very young to care, to be curious and to believe in their own strength.

It is both a fantastic piece of interactive kinetic public sculpture, combining puppetry, found objects and music AND a magical cycle powered carousel ride or younger children, seating 10 at a time.

Performers involve the audience in an imaginative game that involves dressing up, parent participation, and bringing the creatures to life, whilst the audience enjoys the handmade creatures brought to life by human interaction.

Entirely pedal-powered, the Bewonderment Machine is a celebration of sustainable technologies and is highly suitable for festivals and family events.

About A Bird in the Hand Theatre

A Bird in the Hand Theatre is a puppet and mask theatre company based in West Yorkshire, combining the skills of artist Alison Duddle and puppeteer Mark Whitaker. Other shows include Special Delivery, a delightful wordless show about a kind-hearted bike-riding postman.

Alison is a freelance puppet and mask maker and director. She designed and directed numerous shows for families as joint Artistic Director of Horse + Bamboo Theatre. Alison has worked most recently with Handmade Parade, CBBC, the Dukes and 20 Stories High. Mark Whitaker has been a puppeteer since 1989. He has worked with companies including Norwich Puppet Theatre, Little Angel and Thingumajig Theatre. He has also spent time in a galaxy far, far away as a Creatures Operator in the latest Star Wars films.

The Bewonderment Machine is made in collaboration with Visual Artist and Found object whisperer Weston Hammond, engineer and kinetic sculptor Ian Broscomb and bicycle-powered performer Frances Merriman

Funding, commissioning and partner credits

Co-commissioned by Without Walls, Just So Festival, Norfolk & Norwich Festival, Salisbury International Arts Festival and Brighton Festival.
Supported by 101 Outdoor Arts Creation Centre.