Eight-metre giant marionettes on parade in Geneva

Eight-metre giant marionettes on parade in Geneva
The giant 'Grandmother' marionette in Liverpool. File photo: Debu55y/Depositphotos
More than one million people are expected over the next three days in the streets of Geneva as French theatre group Royal de Luxe brings its giants to town.

Geneva will stand not so much on the shoulder but at the feet of giants for three days, as French theatre company Royal de Luxe brings its huge wooden marionettes to the city for a weekend of drama. 

Two 7.5-metre giant wooden marionettes, made by the Nantes-based theatre group Royal de Luxe – led by Jean-Luc Courcoult – will feature in the Geneva show, which sees all-day parades starting today and on September 30th and October 1st.

A parade left Place de la Sardaigne at 9.30am today and another at 12.30 from Parc des Acacias. Tomorrow's parade starts at 10.50am at Plaine de Plainpalais and at 1.25pm again from Place de la Sardaigne. 

The 'Grandmother', seen here at a parade in Liverpool. Photo: ©Serge Koutchinsky_Royal de Luxe. Liverpool. 

More than 1 million spectators are expected to line the streets in Geneva to see the nearly 8-metre tall 'Grandmother,' as well as her equally robust 10-year-old daughter, estimates Le Nouvelliste. 

The giants have already been paraded through Montreal, Los Angeles, Perth, Santiago, Reykjavík, Liverpool, Limerick, Rome and Dakar, among other places. 

Two giants have been selected for Geneva, the so-called 'Grandmother' and her 10-year old daughter, the 'Little Giant'. The giant will be followed by a trunk “carrying all the city's large and small stories,” according to the event's website

The texts and stories to be read by actors are inspired by the Geneva-based research centre CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research. The story goes that instead of a meteorite hitting Geneva, two giants arrive in the Swiss city. 

Photo: ©Pascal Victor_Royal de Luxe. Nantes, 2009. 

“I wanted to create a medium to talk to a whole city, to gather a crowd around a narrative that concerns them. That's how the giants first appeared,” says project founder Courcoult, according to rts.ch.

The Geneva show will cost 2.2 million francs (€1.92 million) in all, to be covered by public and private funds, but is expected to bring in three to seven times that sum, reports news portal rts.ch. 

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