Candice Roberts is full of ideas.
The Vancouver performer interacted with Kelowna audiences with her puppets, vintage films, stop motion animation, tap dance and live music show this weekend as Ideas Bobert! at Black Box Theatre.
All jam-packed into one, the show is aimed at younger audiences, who were invited to hoop and holler during the performance, however, on Saturday the audience was fairly even tempered.
Roberts’ show, which ran for about 50 minutes in length, examined the life of a dorky Bobert, who uses like a clarinet, boxing gloves, a toothbrush and more, to get the audience giggling.
Bobert offered a lucky individual a free makeover, pulling an audience member behind the scenes, using shadow puppetry to pull all sorts of things from her hair, including a mouse and a flower.
Nervous Bobert also relies on the audience’s encouragement to perform her daily tasks.
“Play it,” a young girl impatiently said as Bobert asked the audience if she should use her clarinet in order to attract her wandering bird puppet, which constantly escaped while she was fast asleep.
Roberts is a comedy artist, dancer, musician and creative coach and doesn’t spend all of her time creating performing comedy. In 2014, she received the Mayor’s Arts Award for her work in community building through the arts. She facilitated a team of artists to co-designed a community arts program that was implemented within the BC health system for those in recovery with addiction and mental health issues.
Ideas Bobert! is part of Living Things International Arts Festival, a winter performance festival now in its third year in Kelowna.
The festival runs from Jan. 11 to Feb. 9 and includes performances from the United Kingdom, the USA, Montreal, Vancouver, and the Okanagan Valley.
“It’s connected to the idea of puppetry, where you have objects come to life. The festival is focused on theatrical devices, the kinds of things we do on stage which are kind of (magical), I call it, when something comes alive,” said artistic director Neil Cadger. “Also, the idea of living things to me is philosophically interesting of what is animated and what is not… the festival is also about the place we live in and things we surround ourselves with.”
Throughout the festival, live, free public installations will take place in the FINA Gallery in the Creative and Critical Studies building on campus at UBCO, and student and faculty exhibitions will be at the Alternator Gallery.
For the first time Living Things will also be offering performance workshops led by visiting international artists: Politics in the Room, led by Palmyra performers Bert & Nasi (UK), makes the stage a space for artistic and political negotiation; Naked Comedy led by Deanna Fleysher (USA) explores the performers’ unique connection with the audience, the bravery required to be vulnerable and the gratification that comes from letting go. For information and registration, as well as the festival lineup, visit the Living Things website at www.LivingThingsFestival.com.