Rampaging Rhinoceros

About

#RAMPAGINGRHINOCEROS is the biggest crash of cardboard rhinoceros ever! Come and recolour your inner Rhinoceros and be part of the pandemonium! Drop-in to our craft based mask making workshop and create your very own rhino head using our innovative flatpack rhino masks. Then join the rhino rampage and participate in this family friendly spectacle that examines extinction, recolours your primal inner rhino and remembers the white rhino.

WARNING! You may have to take home your very own cardboard #RAMPAGINGRHINOCEROS mask.

This workshop performance continues Puppets with GUTS research into the role of mutually created objects and celebratory action in public space.

Rampaging Rhinoceros was redeveloped in 2017 with the addition of an interactive and innovative rhino mask making workshop that has been very well received by audiences and presenters. The flexibility of the masks to interact with different audiences, ages groups and locations is very unique and audiences get to take home a beautiful object they co-author. The project is part education, performance and walkabout for the outdoors, with the optional addition of big rhinoceros puppets, a large bottom, drummers and MC.

Reviews

Audiences
BAC Audience Responses

“…very entertaining…”
“…funny,excellent puppets…”
“Endless possibilities… Love this!”
“Great! Just wonderfully engaging and funny.”
“…wonderfully enjoyable.”
“I have never been genuinely frightened of a puppet, until now. Amazing… honestly loved it!”
“Fantastic! Puppets look so life like, can be used for amazing things. The puppeteers were incredible – lots of hard work must have been put in.”
“…THEY ARE AWESOME!”

Critics

“Extraordinarily bizarre.”

Robin Morley
Artistic Director of SO Festival and Magnetic Events, 2013

Gallery

Cast & Creative

Artistic Director and original concept: Ivan Thorley

Lead Designer and Puppet Maker: Nick Barnes

Percussion Musicians: Pablo Paracchino, Hal Thompson, Steve Ryan, Riccardo Castelli

Engagement and Workshop Leader: Oliver Hymans

Workshop Assistant: Charlotte Quartermaine

Design Consultation: Caroline Bowman

Performers: Iskandar Sharrazuddin, Sam Clark, Jane Crawshaw, Oliver Hymans

 

Previous Performances

Workshop- Rhino Mask Making and Rampage

HIDDEN HEATHBROOK, Wandsworth- May 2017

HF UNITY FEST, Hammersmith- June 2017

SUMMER OF POWER, Battersea Power Station- August 2017

 

Big walkabout Rhino Puppets

Gi20mins UK- 2013

 

ENGAGEMENT WORKSHOPS: APRIL TO MAY 2017- ROSE COMMUNITY CENTRE

– Young People- 8 years to 11 years

Date:  19.4.17

Workshop Leader: Oliver Hymans

Workshop Assistant: Charlotte Quartermaine.

 

SESSION 1:  19.4.17

Mr O. Mahoney from the Pest Department at Wandsworth Council was sent to Griffin School and St George’s to investigate some very strange goings on…

Normally tasked with doing the ‘Rats’ and ‘Cockroaches’, Mahoney has been sent into the Patmore Estate to hunt out something bigger, something older, something angrier…

There have been reports of local members of the community spontaneously turning into “Rampaging Rhinos”. The council are worried that if these supposed rhinos start acting together they could create a dangerous herd and could end up causing a stampede, which…who knows what might happen next.

So a team of young people from Griffin and St George’s have been drafted in for the spring term at the Rose Centre to be trained up to deal with the herd. The recruits have been told about a special performance event on May 20th but some details are still being held back for safety reasons!

At the beginning of our training session, the recruits were reminded of how important their commitment was to the project and much responsibility rests on their participation.

Following this the young recruits were put through their paces in an exercise which tests their focus, energy and speed, otherwise known as “WAH!”. Developing the reflexes through the “WAH!” training exercise will prepare everyone for any sudden charge from the rhinos.

The recruits then divided into smaller sub-teams and began to research key information about the ‘rhino’ animal itself. Would you believe it but we learnt that rhinos can grow to be 6ft tall and 15ft wide. They are some of the oldest animals on the planet, dating from 50 million years ago and when they get together as a herd they are called a “crash” of rhinos. Terrifying! Also we learnt that rhinos skin can be 5cm thick and their horns are so precious they are often poached and sold for millions of pounds – that explains why they are almost extinct in the wild! However despite their best research we were not able to understand why they have arrived on the Patmore Estate? Our training will have to continue next week…

PARTICIPANT QUOTES:

“I’m excited to do the performance” – Tia

“I’m excited to crash into people whilst I’m walking like a rhino’ – Shania

“I’m exited to walk like a rhino, like a pro. I am looking forward to wearing my mask.” – Diannah

“I am looking forward to making my mask. Mine is going to look like a rainbow”

‘Looking forward to when we are making the rhinos”

“Can we take our masks home?”

 

SESSION 2:  26.4.17

The Rampaging Rhinos Investigation Group met for their second training session this week – focusing on body percussion and creating some rampaging beats! The young recruits were fired up from last week’s introductory session and were already brimming with ideas of how they might tackle the strange rhino-people on the estate on May 20th.

As part of our training exercises today, the young rhino hunters are getting good at the “WAH!” exercise! Lots of group energy was passed around the space at the start of the session and got us focused for the rest of the afternoon.

Next up the recruits were split into two teams and tested on their skills in collaboration, creativity and team strength. Each team was tasked with the challenge of crossing the length of the training room using only two pieces of newspaper. The winning team was the one reaching the finish line first and with their newspaper sheets most in tact. It was a close race but we learnt the key to success was patience, coolness and communication with your teammates.

Almost ready for the main event of the session, we used a new training exercise to get the young people moving around the space using a series of simple paired instructions such as STOP and GO! JUMP and CROUCH! WAVE and CLAP! However, this group were too good at this and so we quickly swapped the instructions around so every instruction meant the opposite!

Our guest facilitator–expert, was Hal, who’d travelled all the way from Brighton to train the recruits in body percussion, call and response, and moving to a beat. He didn’t waste time in getting us creating a group beat, using our bodies, hands and feet, voices and sound boxes. There’s still a lot to learn but we’re hoping we can use this technique to herd the rampaging rhinos to some sort of order.

To finish this week’s training we did a drama exercise to each become and animal of our own choice and to go stealth, into the wild and to live the role. This is exercise will put us in good stead for next week’s movement workshop when we’ll attempt to beat the rhino-people by becoming the rhinos ourselves.

PARTICIPANT QUOTES:

“I learnt that communication is key”

“I liked creating the beat with Hal – the clapping, phrases and stamping” – Sameriah

“We need to work together”

“The animals we created would have been better with more sounds” – Dujour

“You did a great job today but I recommend next time you need to listen and look” – Hal

“I enjoyed doing the animal impressions”

 

SESSION 3: 03.05.17

It’s halfway point for the Rampaging Rhinos Investigation Group who gathered this week ready to infiltrate the herd and become one with the Rhinoceros! It’s clear that the young recruits are evolving into effective undercover investigators as their focus at the start of the session was some of the best we’ve seen to date.

Divided into two sub-groups, the young people quickly showed their agility and creativity using their bodies to create a series of shapes called out by the leader. In fact, they worked so well in their sub-teams that it was impossible to declare one winner.

Their detective skills and leadership potential was put to the test in the next training activity – “The Secret Leader”. With one young person taking the role of the detective, it didn’t take this young person long to work out who was secretly controlling the movements of the rest of the group. With this level of detective work, we will need to develop our stealth skills if we’re do take on the mysterious Rhino-People of Patmore.

From working in pairs to teams of 4, the young people developed their leadership and teamwork skills in mirroring each others movements. We’re not quite perfect just yet, but we think we may have found the a stealthy way of infiltrating the herd.

Our guest facilitator this week was the skilful Pablo who built on our skills of percussion and rhythm. We enjoyed using our bodies to create different types of sounds from a low to high clap, and from slapping our bellies to thumping our thighs.

Then came the finale of the workshop; it was time to strap on the practice Rhino-heads and to see what might happen. For the young recruits, it was like a duck to water – they quickly found which movement worked best for “becoming” the rhinoceros and how to stamp a rhythm to Pablo’s booming drumming. We sure are stomping in the right direction; maybe soon we’ll get to the bottom of all these Rampaging Rhinoceros’…

PARTICIPANT QUOTES:

What did we learn from today’s session that worked well?

“The low and slow movement looked good”

“When we move in unison it is better”

“Everyone should stop at the same time”

What are the challenges to our performance on May 20th?

“We can’t see as well in the masks”

“We have to look on the group to see”

“How do we learn the moves before the day”

“Want to learn to make the performance better”

 

SESSION 4: 10.05.17

The Rampaging Rhinos Investigation Group had a special delivery this week, in the form of a large number of flat-packed and laser-cut pieces of white cardboard. It turned out that these strange pieces of cardboard were to be the group’s disguise – a white rhinoceros head each – for going undercover to investigate the Rhinoceroses on the estate.

Putting together the flat-packed heads was harder than we anticipated, and we had already thought that it was going to be complicated! We dedicated the first 45mins of the session to getting the rhino heads constructed. We started with folding and bending all the premade creases, then working at putting the forehead and first horn together, followed by the rhino’s cheek bones, ears and second horn.

Once the rhinoceros heads were fully constructed it was time to add the wrinkles and skin markings! To make sure we got things right, we looked at some images of rhino skin and rhino heads from the computer and then began to sketch out our own ideas on a paper template.

Then using special paint pens, we got to work at transferring our designs onto the 3D rhino heads. The final part of the design was to add a small strip of webbing through the back of the rhino head to use as a way to attach the masks to our own heads.

And there were go…all ready for next week’s expedition into Carey Gardens, when we go undercover in our rhinoceros disguises to get to the truth behind these strange rhinoceros people of Wandsworth…

PARTICIPANT QUOTES:

(What have we achieved today?)

“I managed to make my mask with no help from an adult”

“I did not think I could do it at the beginning”

“I really like my designs of wrinkles, an Anime eyebrow and shading in the ears” – Marcel.

 

SESSION 5: 17.05.17

The Rampaging Rhinos Investigation Group gathered this week ready to go into the field and see the Rhinos for the very first time. The young people were briefed on their arrival to the Rose Community Centre about the next stage of their training. There was no turning back as we made our way to the Yvonne Carr Centre, deep in the heart of the Patmore Estate…What would we see? Would we come back in one piece? Who knew…

When we arrived, there was a short wait before we could enter the space with the rhinos. All that could be heard from deep inside the Yvonne Carr was loud drumming and the sounds of stamping footsteps.

Finally we were all beckoned into a large room, where we could see two drummers with rhino heads and a strangely dressed man by the name of Berenger. Now, Berenger asked us if we wanted to be rhinos and so we followed his instructions on how to ‘become’ a rhino. This involved stamping our feet and changing direction and walking with heavy and loud stomps.

Just as everyone joined the herd, a woman, by the name of Daisy, entered the space asking if anyone had seen her cat ‘Peter’? We hadn’t, and were quickly encouraged by Berenger to keep on moving as the rhino herd.

At which point a third character stopped us in our tracks, his name was Jean, and he really tried to warn us about the dangers of the herd all rampaging like rhinos. However Berenger, our leader, encouraged us to put our rhino heads on and to keep rampaging. The drumming got louder and the rampaging got wilder and more fierce.

But then there was a scream. It was Daisy. She had found ‘Peter’. Her Cat. But Peter was not in a good way. He was dead, and looked pretty much flattened. We all removed our rhino heads in shock, with Jean pretty much telling us: ‘I told you so!’ and ‘See what you’ve done, your rampaging has killed Daisy’s poor cat’. With a lot of confusion, and a suddenly sheepish looking Berenger, Jean suggested we have a funeral for Peter. And so the drummer played a funeral march and we paraded, heads down, to a spot where the cat could be buried. A moment’s silence was held.

In recognising our actions, and with Jean’s encouragement, we decided to remove our rhino heads once and for all and to enjoy what makes us human – that is being together with our friends and to have a dance, and not a rampage, to the drumming. Berenger did try and persuade us otherwise, but it was too late – we wanted to dance.

And that was the end of the investigation.

Afterwards, we sat down with the actors who played Berenger, Daisy and Jean, as well as the rest of the Puppets with Guts company and performance director. The director, Nathan, was interested to hear about the young participants experience of the Rampaging Rhino story and to listen to any thing in the performance that they did or didn’t like. Some people felt strongly that it was actually Jean to blame and others felt the puppet of the dead cat needed to be more gruesome!

What we all agreed on was that the performance was very exciting!