The Rhyme of the Ancient Merino

It’s great to see the complete realisation of Dave Jones’s The Rhyme of the Ancient Merino.

At sail on a sea of wheat, the Ancient Merino and his aging theatre troupe struggle to eke out an existence in a hostile environment. When a the threat of modern technology looms they must adapt or fade into obscurity.

The animation is an allegory for the story of ‘the 50 year history of the Arapiles Community Theatre, and the recent influx of new arrivals and the changes that has brought about’ in the small regional town of Natimuk, Victoria. Traditionally a service hub for the surrounding farming country, Natimuk is also the closest town to Mount Arapiles, a mecca for rock climbers, so it is an interesting mix of farming people, climbers and an arts community. In October it will again be the centre for the Nati Frinj.

I love the puppets in this; they’re life size and  made from bits of old farm machinery. And I like the little details like the snails.

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