Altered Realities and the Land of Make-Believe in the Berkshires

Norman Rockwell Museum Presents “Altered Realities and the Land of Make-Believe”  Summer Lecture and Performance Series

In conjunction with its new exhibition, “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs: The Creation of a Classic,” Norman Rockwell Museum presents, “Altered Realities and the Land of Make Believe,” a lecture and performance series to be held Thursday evenings in July and August, from 5:30 to 7pm. Explore the impact of popular mythology and fairy tales on the way we view ourselves and our world, with literary scholars and folklorists, authors, artists and performers. The events are free with Museum admission unless otherwise stated.

Fairy tales are the focus of the Norman Rockwell Museum’s special exhibit this summer. “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs: The Creations of a Classic,” features over 200 pieces, including conceptual drawings, character studies, storyboards, and animation drawings from the classic 1937 Walt Disney film. Based on the German fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm, the film uses early animation techniques and the work of over 1000 artists and production staff in order to bring the story to life. The Museum’s exhibit offers families a chance to learn about the process of creating an animated film in the days before computer animation. The exhibit features pieces from every step of the process, allowing visitors to see the changes and improvements made along the way.

In conjunction with the exhibit, the Norman Rockwell Museum is also offering a summer event series. Titled, “Altered Realities and the Land of Make-Believe,” the lecture and performance series features everything from acapella to a discussion on youth and media. The wide variety of events is designed to explore the impact of popular fairy tales on the way in which we view the world within our modern culture. Featuring literary scholars, folklorists, authors, artists, and performers, the series offers events for adults and children alike.

Families can pair a visit to the exhibit with a screening of the 1916 silent film version of Snow White based on the 1912 Broadway play,  Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, which was adapted from the Grimm brothers 1812 fairy tale…

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Hansel & Gretel: Learning Through the Len of a Classic Fairy Tale

Hansel & Gretel: Gingerbread, Opera, Fairy Tale & Puppet Show

Hansel and Gretel: Learning about Opera! is a free online educational experience featuring Humperdinck’s Opera Hansel and Gretel. Players can control interactive elements in every scene and watch the play unfold. There are even lesson plans for educators to download, including music education info and cross-curricular activities on fairy tales.

Did you know the old folk tale of Hansel and Gretel, made famous by the brothers Grimm, inspired many Germans in the 1600s to create model witches’ houses from hard gingerbread? Building fanciful gingerbread houses at Christmastime hos now become a part of American holiday traditions.

Take this interesting fact and combine it with this cool interactive web site where kids can partake in the creation of an animated opera of “Hansel and Gretel,” presented by Creative Kids Education Foundation. The interactive opera takes 40-50 minutes to navigate through the creation process (with adult supervision), but kids can learn about this fairy tale (the inspiration for Gingerbread Houses) and opera, set designing and choreography while watching the play unfold while controlling interactive elements in each scene.

UPCOMING EVENT:

Speaking of Hansel and Gretel, from December 27th-30th, 2012 the Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum in Lenox will host puppeteer Carl Sprague who will present a marionette production of “Hansel and Gretel.” After the show, kids can meet the antique puppets used in the show at a Victorian Tea, and there will also be an opportunity to learn about the puppeteer’s methods.

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