In the south-west corner of Western Australia, there were Aboriginal communities full of mysteries, one of these mysteries was a boat that had come up from out of the sand, only the prow could be seen, the rest was imprisoned in the ground.
The incredible and phenomenal journey of the Giants in the streets of Perth
Presented in Perth, Australia, from 13 to 15 February 2015. This creation inaugurates the Perth International Arts Festival 2015 with a new show on the occasion of the centenary of the First World War (Battle of Gallipoli) - 1.4 million spectators.
One day, the Little Girl Giant, busy with her travels, fell into one of the Aboriginal communities of the Noongar Nation, into one of those families who are in love with the barrab (sky), the boodja (earth), the yorgam (trees) and keap (water).
She was so welcomed that she decided to stay with them for a long time. She then witnessed the evolution and change of these inhabitants in the face of the transformation of the Australian continent. She lived there as though it were a beelya (river), full of dreams that jumped like fish.
One day, one of the community’s children brought her an old book full of drawings. It was dog-eared, crumpled, aged. It told the story of a little girl in a lighthouse full of love and sorrow, who watched soldiers leaving Australia on ships, carrying hope into lost battles. It was 1915 on the beaches of Gallipoli where the sand, reddened by the blood of men, frightened the moon.
Through the book, the Little Girl Giant, as she looked at the sky, saw the past, the present and even the future. Her gaze plunged into the centre of the battle, and she could see men disappearing, like being suddenly wiped from the earth as an eraser would rub out on a drawing. She also saw a boat sink, snatched by a gust stronger than a cathedral and laid down on the bottom of the ocean, then an Australian diver, sent to find survivors, stuck in air bubbles.
As he could not see a living soul on the sea-bed, he decided to stay there. Miraculously and without knowing it, he started walking and this removed the tubes and the air that filled his lungs. As he turned his head, he saw dozens of boats lying in the sand. Methodically, he entered each ship and brought dead men out of them. He dug the ground to bury each one and he continued, his muscles toned by an infernal will, so much so that around each sunken boat, here was a graveyard, like small heaps of sand without crosses, only small bellies emerging from the dust.
There were hundreds like this around each boat, peaceful. With a madness which cannot be named, he continued his work.
But from graveyard to graveyard, his body grew thicker, denser and without realising it, one day he was able to overturn the ships.
He had monumental strength. He had quite simply grown like a child in a bath who suddenly realises that his feet are touching the taps. It was simply the story of a Giant who became big at the bottom of the sea.
In the Noongar country, the Little Girl Giant closed the last page of the book. The little Aboriginal child, his eyes full of colours, was sad then, in his gaze a rainbow flew away to the clouds. He understood then that the Little Girl Giant had to leave to re-join her family, and when the sun lifted the horizon, he hurried to fetch his father. Whilst the stars hid in the sky, lying behind the morning light, all the people of the Noongar Nation saw a tear come from the Little Girl Giant’s eyelid. As it touched the ground, a small puddle was swallowed up by the soil. In this very spot, a tree could be seen growing in the space of two hours.
From a small and barely awoken sprout, a trunk developed, full of branches with leaves that the wind enjoyed moving. It was just a tree in the boodja (country). Then she thought that the buried boat could sail the earth to find the diver. The Aboriginals began digging and within ten days, the ship was ready on the ground. The Little Girl Giant climbed onto it and the Noongars began to sing the rain. Accompanied by the sound of the boomerangs, she crossed Western Australia.
The sand made waves, the boodja filling with water. In short, she arrived in Minang boodja (Albany) from where she sent a hot air balloon, like a moon over the ocean, to call the diver. Then she headed to Whadjuk boodja (Perth). Upon her arrival in the big city, she placed her head underwater and blew bubbles which echoed at the bottom of the ocean.
Everyone knows that whales can hear sounds from 5,000 kilometres away when they call each other and that the sound of people’s footsteps on pavements reverberates to the centre of the earth. The air bubbles that were pushed by the tide floated around the Giant Diver. With their large, small or tiny shapes, they follow one another like a convoy of boats and one after the other; they exploded in front of the Giant’s eyes. They expressed signals like Morse code: a point, a line, two points then nothing and again two lines and a point. It was a language the man of the sea knew well. He could then read sentences in which each message ended with “come”.
No sooner had he understood he was surrounded by a tornado of fishes. They circled him faster and faster so that the swirl of force became a gust of wind. On the surface, the agitated fog started to cough so hard that a storm swallowed the bottom of the water, throwing the diver into the sky all the way into the clouds. Then, like a lost body, he fell down unconscious in Perth. The earth trembled and suddenly a great spray of water burst out of the ground between two buildings. A geyser was born, as if to greet through space the arrival of the Giants.
© Jean-Luc Courcoult, Author-Director, Founder of Royal de Luxe
« just letting you know what an impact you made on our family, we just adore the little giant. she's still very much in our minds!
miss her and the lilliputteans.
thanks for coming to perth! »
« Thank you so, so much for bringing the Giants to Perth. The Little Girl Giant was so beautiful..much credit to the Lilliputians who operated her. They made her come alive. Absolutely awesome. Same with the Diver. Will remember them coming to Perth for years to come. It was so sad to see the Giants leave. Please come back again. »
« So many people, so many happy faces, truly an amazing experience. For three days the whole of Perth came together and shared complete happiness. Thankyou »
« The Giants in Perth was the best, most exciting, incredible and wondrous 3 day event I have ever had the privilege to experience! Merci à tous »
« Thank You for the most wonderful experience of seeing your Giants. You forget that they are puppets and they become so real. It was one of the best days I have ever had. Would so love to see you again. Also a huge Thanks to all of the Lilliputians who bought them to life for us. Louise. »
« We fell in love with your company watching "The Peplum", so many years ago and where so excited that you where coming to Perth with The Giants.
Again you captivated all our senses and our hearts with your magnificent production. Thank you for sharing this wonderful three days in our city and to all your magic performers including the Australian imports of Lilliputians. Bravo, Bravo, Bravo!!!
Our hearts and minds have been blessed with your creativity and your passion - long may it bear fruit. »
« Everyone is enarmoured by th wonderful Giants who visited our city this weekend. I would like to tell you how much the human Lilliputians were my favourites. They worked so hard at what they do to keep the Giant Diver and Little Girl working. They themselves were the highlight for me and I need to see the Giants all over again. Congratulations and appreciation to each and every one of the Lilliputians. Thank you. Thank you so much. »
« you brought imagination and excitement to our isolated corner of Australia, thank you for enchanting show! »
« Merci Monsieur Courcoult and the Lilliputiens for the spectacular and unforgettable performance you have brought into our city. It is the most mesmerizing event ever in Perth as it brought us all to relive our childhood dreams again. My family and I have missed the giants so much that we wish they will come back again sometime in the future. Please do come back soon! »
« I am a Yindjibarndi women from the Pilbara of Western, Australia and work at Royal Perth Hospital with Aboriginal people with renal disease many Aboriginal people where on the streets of Perth to see the Girl and the Driver and where overwhelmed and full of appreciation to see such a spirtual ,emotional and magical inclusive event which incorporated a nongar dreamtime story You are such a inovated Artistic Director. Thank yoy Thank You xxxxxxxxxx »
« Little Girl & Diver, you have stolen our hearts. We miss you. So much beauty, so much awe. Little Girl, my little man sat on your arm and was captured completely. We will never forget these past few days. Thank-you from our hearts. »
« Thank you a thousand times for bringing the Giants to Perth. They created so much joy and happiness. We were so sorry to see them leave, but those happy memories will remain forever. I didn't even mind listening to their snoring during the night! Many thanks to everyone, and best wishes. Linda xx »
« Many thanks to all involved in this very memorable experiance, my husband and i took our grand daughter Skylah who is 17 months old, and all she said was "WOW" each time she saw the Diver and The Little Girl, you all made a very excited family very happy. Great teamwork and thank you so much for coming to Perth. »
« Your enchanting giants moved an entire city this weekend. I feel like Perth has also woken from its slumber by the majic of your performace as hundreds of thousands of us danced with little girl the night she found the Diver. Thank you so much for reminding us that the world is still full of inspiration, beauty, imagination and magic. »
« Your spectacular show here in Perth has left me in awe of the way the Lilliputians bought the little girl and the Diver to life. I have never seen such a magical show, it all seemed so real, and one I will never forget. Thank you so much for coming to Perth »
« My heart soars with The Giants and may never land back on the earth! Merci, merci, merci! The Giants in Perth was one of the best things I have ever seen. You are so clever and so creative and I am so glad there is the Royal de Luxe to remind us of how wonderful it is to be human and to be blessed with imaginations. XXX Rebecca »
« Un grand Merci a toute la troupe pour ces trois jours au pays des kangourous. Vous m'avez fait rever et quels reves fantastiques!!! Je passerai vous voir a Nantes a l occasion. »
« Royale de Luxe...merci beaucoup!!! Thank you for coming to Perth and giving us so much. What an incredible journey. I saw your Giants everyday - Friday, Saturday and today, at all different parts of our city. I felt like a child and was so delighted to be a part of the crowd enjoying such a tremendous spectacle. Thank you! I am hooked! »
« Thank you sor such an enchanting and awesome experience. I fell in love the Little Girl Giant, her eyes are so real, I thought she was looking directly at me! The Diver Giant was awesome and the operators , what can I say, they were brilliant! A thoroughly magical experience for Perth Western Australia, I can't remember ever seeing our City so happy. Thank you again, »
« According to report, 75 per cent of the population of metropolitan Perth saw The Giants over three days, the stage centered on Langley Park. »
« HAS Perth ever had a more popular pair of visitors than a Little Girl Giant and Diver Giant? Royal de Luxe’s The Giants drew hundreds of thousands of onlookers into the city across three spectacular days of what the travelling French company call street theatre, but Colin Barnett confirmed it had been ‘the event of a lifetime’ for WA. »
« Perth has come to a standstill to witness the most epic artistic event in the city’s history, with hundreds of thousands of people dropping everything to watch a six-meter-high marionette walk CBD streets. »
« Les géants de la troupe nantaise Royal de Luxe ont cassé la baraque ce weekend à l’inauguration de l’International arts Festival of Perth (Australie) avec 1,4 million de spectateurs (pour 2 millions d’habitants). »
« And so, when the Giants who had entranced Perth came together with the centenary of the Anzac legend that has helped define Australia, it was enough to leave 400,000 people simultaneously silent and spellbound. They had come from all over the city and beyond, and queued for hours – some even overnight – to find a spot. »
« Perth has never seen a weekend like it – three days when we gave ourselves over, heart and soul, to a pair of oversized mechanical creatures who wandered through the city while hundreds of thousands of us waited, craned necks for a glimpse and applauded spontaneously. »
« Giants take Perth by storm […] Emotions were high as people from all walks of life gathered to witness the drama of Little Girl Giant and Deep Sea Diver and attempted to decipher the ANZAC commemoration tale they were said to be playing out. »
« ‘I’m looking forward to when the Little Girl wakes up, that first moment of her waking up and beginning to walk around the city’ he said [Festival artistic director Jonathan Holloway]. […] ‘It is something people remember with fondness and huge emotion’. »