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New Victory Blog

The New Victory Blog is a place to learn more about New York's theater for families and the shows we produce. Find out what we do and what we're passionate about—exploring the arts as a family.

The 2016-17 SeasonLast season, we dove 20,000 leagues under the sea, danced through the streets of Bangladesh, celebrated the holidays with acrobats from Africa and partied with a worrisome elephant, a very excited piggie and a host of other colorful characters. Companies from 11 different countries inspired New Yorkers from every borough to share a smile, gasp and giggle.

Through our education programs, students from 179 New York City schools explored each show's themes and art forms in exactly 3,000 pre- and post-show workshops with our talented Teaching Artists. 

All in all, 110,000 New Yorkers nurtured a #LoveofTheater with The New Victory, and here’s what they had to say:

Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea might be the most creative show we have seen in the past 5 years. It was totally original and felt like the future of theatrical drama and storytelling. –Keith T.

I loved the performance of Chotto Desh—what an extraordinary performer and production.  The New Victory is a wonderful performance space, because it feels so intimate. The moment I walked into the theater, the staff members were welcoming. –Betty R.

In a brief close-up routine ... there's real elegance and even wit in the precision of his gestures … But Mr. Bishop's enthusiasm is for larger illusions. He can teleport his assistant, he can vaporize a dog, he can walk through a wall ... 'That's not real!' gasped the 6-year-old pal I'd brought with me. – New York Times review of Jason Bishop: Straight Up Magic

Life may hold no guarantees, but unless the roof falls in at The New Victory Theater, you're pretty much assured a swell time at Mother Africa: My Home … My gadget-addicted 13-year-old was rapt, alternately laughing and gasping at the stunts. Only when she left the theater did she pull out her cellphone—to rave about the show to her friends.  – New York Times review of Mother Africa

Oh Boy was a great production. The actor was amazing, engaging and captivating. The wonderful script was able to convey deep feelings and family dynamics through a one man show. – Miri S.

Thank you for bringing Elephant and Piggie's We Are in a Play to New York! It was an amazing experience for my daughter because she learned how to read through the Elephant and Piggie books. We enjoyed making the Piggie headband, dancing with the New Vic ushers and taking pictures with the actors. –Natasa M.

Liam was transfixed. He sat forward in his seat, exclaimed in joy and surprise and even forgot to ask incessant questions throughout the show … The show continued to amaze and astound, looking less like a juggling display than frenetic athletes setting off fireworks. –NYC Dads Group review of Water on Mars

I have the greatest confidence that all who see The Aging Magician at The New Victory Theater will be shocked by how beautiful this show is. – BroadwayWorld review of The Aging Magician

It was our first time at The New Victory Theater and it will not be our last … [We] try to expose him as much as possible to the culture that the city has to offer, taking him to see live performances is something I want to do more of. This will be the perfect place to start! –Donuts, Dresses & Dirt review of Something

 

Right now, we're working hard to get ready for the 2017-18 Season. As we look back fondly on the incredible year we spent together, what was your favorite memory? Share it with us by commenting below or connecting with us on Facebook
Posted by Beth Henderson

Welcome back! As the sun continues to shine, our Summer Field Guides continue with more fun-filled activities that are perfect for the whole family. In this guide, we get to know two upcoming shows that teach us the importance of family and companionship, A Sky for the Bears and Pss Pss

From inventive shadow puppetry to silly slapstick, these shows are not to be missed. Read on to discover crafty and unique activities that will leave you counting down the days until the 2017-18 Season begins!
 
Contributed by Caroline Dowden, Summer 2017 Communications Apprentice

A Sky for the Bears

In A Sky for the Bears, two heartfelt stories come to life through the use of shadow puppetry and physical theater. In the first, a handsome bear realizes what he wants most of all is a cub of his own. In the second story, a young bear is devastated by the death of his grandfather and wishes to join him in the sky. Both protagonists set out on different journeys, only to discover that the answers to their hearts' desires are closer than they think. 

Unleash your family's creative side by making your own simple shadow puppets in this Family Activity! All you'll need are these shadow puppet templates, a pencil, cardboard or cardstock, scissors, tape and a lamp or flashlight.

Once you've collected all of your tools, it's time to make your shadow puppet come to life!
  1. Use your templates to trace an outline onto the cardboard, and use your scissors to cut it out.
  2. Grab a few pieces of tape to attach your pencil to the back of each of your puppets.
  3. Place a lamp on the ground, or on a table. Point your lamp to the wall. Don't forget to turn it on! Turn off all other lights and close the curtains.  
  4. Hold your puppets between the light and wall. If you can spot a shadow on the wall, then you've succeeded! Try moving the puppets closer to the light or the wall to see what happens.
  5. Experiment with other household objects to see what kinds of shadows they cast. Try using your hands! What shapes can you make?
  6. Create your own performance with your new puppets. Make sure to use movement, just like the performers in A Sky for the Bears
Record a video of the story you create and make sure to tag us when you share it on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram
Contributed by Ruthie Ostrow, Summer 2017 Communications Apprentice

Pss Pss

In Pss Pss, two clowns gracefully fumble through mishaps, tricks and acrobatics—all without saying a word! Inspired by silent films, this zany duo flaunts their friendship in a sweet, slapstick routine. 

Want to know a way you can tell your family you love them without making a peep? Try your hand at American Sign Language, a visual language used by the Deaf community throughout the United States. ASL uses your hands, face and body to communicate complex thoughts with vivid gestures. 

Be warned: ASL has a completely different set of grammar rules than English. But there's a sign for each letter of the English alphabet, so use this chart to S-P-E-L-L to your H-E-A-R-T'S content! Check out our favorite words below to show your family just how much you care.

I Love You: Place your middle and ring fingers flat against your palm and keep the others outstretched. This sign is a combination of the signs for the letters I, L and Y. 

Love

Love: Cross both arms over your chest (and close to the heart!) as if you were giving your best friend a tight hug. 

I love you

Friend: This sign looks like a chain—because you'll always be linked together! Hook your two pointer fingers together and then switch your linked fingers to complete the sign. 

Friend


Pss Pss FrameAre you interested in learning more about ASL? Check out our sign-interpreted performances throughout the 2017-18 Season!

Take your friend power to the next level by taking a picture! Grab a friend, strike your favorite sign and print it out. For an added kick, try a black and white filter. Your photo will look just like a still from a vintage silent film. 

To make your photo look extra special, make a frame! You'll just need cardstock, glue and 15 popsicle sticks. 
  1. Glue 11 standard-sized popsicle sticks side-by-side onto a piece of 4.5"x4.5" cardstock. 
  2. Glue two popsicle sticks on each side of the frame. 
  3. Glue your photo in the middle.
  4. Decorate with markers, paint or stickers! Attach ribbon or string to the back so you can hang your frame. 

 
A Sky for the BearsPss Pss Interested in joining us next season? Learn more about A Sky for the Bears and Pss Pss here!
Posted by Beth Henderson
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