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  • Théâtre Raymond Kabbaz Presents
    Malika, Queen of the Cats
    A Puppet Theatre Performance
    By Tears of Joy Theatre
    In Los Angeles
    Thursday, November 14, 2013 

    A Colorful Palestinian Fairy Tale About the Power of Giving

    LOS ANGELES, CA – October 17, 2013 – The performance space at Le Lycée Français de Los AngelesThéâtre Raymond Kabbaz, is pleased to present Malika, Queen of the Cats, a puppet theatre performance by Portland-based Tears of Joy Theatre, on Thursday, November 14, 2013. Malika, Queen of Cats is an artful rendition of a classic Palestinian folktale about the power of giving.  The performance is full of fun, with humor and sight gags for children and adults alike to enjoy.  The hour-long story features a benevolent royal cat, decked out in a jeweled headdress and colorful Arabic garb, that dispenses magic to the worthy.  The show will start at 7:30pm and will take place at Théâtre Raymond Kabbaz, 10361 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles CA 90064 (310.286.0553).  Malika, Queen of the Cats is designed for students of all grade levels.  Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for students.   Tickets can be purchased here.  Learn more about the production here.  For information about Théâtre Raymond Kabbaz, please visit www.theatreraymondkabbaz.com.

    Synopsis –
    Malika, Queen of Cats uses a traditional Palestinian fairy tale to introduce young audience members to Middle Eastern culture and the power of giving to others.  As the story goes, a kind and generous old woman named Sitti, who once upon a time lived in Palestine, rescued a small kitten from a tree.  The thankful kitten introduces the woman to a group of brightly-colored and entertaining talking cats, led by Malika, the Queen of the Cats.  The grateful cats reward the woman for her good deed, but conflict arises from there.  See more background material in the curriculum guide here.


    Malika, Queen of the Cats
    (photo courtesy of Tears of Joy Theatre)

    Background –
    The puppet play is based on the book Sitti and the Cats, written by Sally Bahous, who grew up in Palestine.  Adapted by Nancy Aldrich, Tears of Joy’s Artistic Director, the story takes place hundreds of years ago when Palestine was part of a large empire (prior to current boundaries in the Middle East).Cats are important creatures in Islamic culture. According to one story, Muhammad, the founder of the religion of Islam, was so fond of cats that when one fell asleep on the sleeve of his shirt, he cut off the sleeve rather than wake the cat.

    Puppets –
    Malika, Queen of the Cats will be performed using rod puppets.  The puppeteers, who are not seen, will sit on stools as they operate puppets held above their heads.  Some shadow puppets will be used in the cave of the cats.

    Music –
    The Middle Eastern music that accompanies Malika, Queen of the Cats, was composed and recorded by Al Andalus Ensemble.  The group specializes in music of the Middle East and tours extensively to schools as well.  They use two special instruments: the oud (a stringed instrument that preceded the guitar) and the tabla (a drum).

    Tears of Joy Theatre –
    Tears of Joy Theatre brings amazing puppet theatre to audiences throughout the U.S. and abroad. Founded in 1971, the theatre is recognized nationally for its commitment to excellence and innovation. Four of the theatre’s productions have received American puppetry’s highest honor, the Citation of Excellence in the Art of Puppetry. The mission of Tears of Joy Theatre is to produce, develop and present puppet theatre that celebrates the diversity of world cultures, and to teach children as well as enrich their lives by helping them experience, create and perform art with professional artists.

    Théâtre Raymond Kabbaz –
    Théâtre Raymond Kabbaz (TRK) is a non-profit institution dedicated to the promotion of art and culture in the West Los Angeles area.  This 220-seat theater welcomes multidisciplinary and multicultural shows.  TRK’s mission is to be an open window on French and international cultures and to inspire and sustain a lifelong appreciation for the arts.

    Links –
    • Théâtre Raymond Kabbaz – http://www.theatreraymondkabbaz.com
    • Théâtre Raymond Kabbaz on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/pages/Theatre-Raymond- Kabbaz/43864706321
    • Tears of Joy Theatre Official Site – http://www.tojt.org
    • Tears of Joy Theatre on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/tearsofjoytheatre
    • Malika, Queen of the Cats Photos & Video – http://www.tojt.org/schools/assemblies/malika-queen-of-the-cats

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    For more information, photos, or to schedule an interview, please contact Green Galactic’s Lynn Tejada at 213-840-1201 or lynn@greengalactic.com.

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    “Palestinian fairy tales appear designed to teach children as well as to entertain them.  These fairy tales dwell on what is socially accepted and necessary for village life.  Sharing with neighbors is almost a necessity in small villages for the survival of all, as is friendliness.  Good is defined as putting the good of the community and others before self.  Evil is often defined as selfishness.”
    – from Sitti and the Cats by Sally Bahous

    Posted on October 17th, 2013 lynn-hasty No comments

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