A Kafka classic reimagined through puppetry

Franz Kafka’s novel, The Trial, provides the inspiration for an exciting performance collaboration between WAAPA and Spare Parts Puppet Theatre this November.

Under the expert guidance of Spare Parts Puppet Theatre’s Associate Director, Michael Barlow, WAAPA’s graduating Performance Making students are using the magic of contemporary puppet theatre to illuminate Franz Kafka’s darkly humorous novel about bureaucracy gone mad.

Adapted for the stage by 3rd Year student Zachary Sheridan, The Trial will be performed by 3rd Year Bachelor of Performing Arts (BPA) students under the direction of Michael Barlow on Friday 2 and Saturday 3 November at Spare Parts Puppet Theatre in Fremantle.

The Trial is the nightmarish tale of Josef K., a respectable bank officer who is suddenly and inexplicably arrested, and must defend himself against a charge about which he can get no information.

“This production of The Trial takes a comic view of Josef K’s tribulations at the hands of the bureaucracy as it questions our complicity in keeping our own position in society – even when it comes at the expense of others,” says Barlow.

“The performers have been working hard over the last month to master the physical and conceptual demands of puppet theatre, and to create a large array of puppets for the production.”

This is the fourth year that WAAPA’s graduating BPA students have been offered the opportunity to study puppetry through an ongoing partnership with Spare Parts Puppet Theatre.

“Our students are very lucky to have Australia’s flagship puppetry company on their doorstep,” says Dr Frances Barbe, WAAPA Course Coordinator of the BPA program. “The Puppetry unit for the BPA program is taught in the Spare Parts venue and by Spare Parts creatives, so it’s a fantastic collaboration.”

Barlow describes the artists emerging from the BPA course as an exciting new force in WA theatre.

“It’s a privilege to contribute to their development,” he says. “Previous graduates of the course have gone on to work with Spare Parts on a number of productions and we hope to continue to sow seeds for the future of puppetry in this fertile ground.”

Perth audiences are invited to see the theatrically stunning results of this year’s collaboration when The Trial is performed in early November – with only two shows, book now to avoid missing out!

PERFORMANCE INFORMATION: THE TRIAL                                       


Tickets $22 + $3.95 booking fee

Friday 2 and Sat 3 November, 7.30pm

Adapted by: Zachary Sheridan

Directed by: Michael Barlow

Performed by: WAAPA 3rd Year Performance Making students

BOOK NOW at Spare Parts Puppet Theatre on (08) 9355 5044 or online by heading HERE.