Puppets bring Chinese toad tale to Lipsey

Published 6:59 am Sunday, January 29, 2017

Fog and lights filled the room Friday as the Lipsey School students watched the “The Toad Prince,” the Chinese retelling of “The Beauty and The Beast.”

The characters in the tale are not real. But neither are the actors. They’re puppets.

This version tells the story of Indri, the toad prince, inheriting his ugliness from his father.

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After the show, students Clarizza Tate, Shaniya Diggs, Glendi Vasquez, Sharpe Walker, London Carter, Cameron Humphreys and Vivi Claire Porter met with the puppets — and the puppeteers — to learn more about the story they told.

“I learned not to judge a book by its cover. Even though it doesn’t look right, just don’t judge,” Carter said.

Hard work and high test scores paid off and this puppet show was their reward. The puppet show played nicely with the lesson plan this month covering Chinese culture. It all coincides with the Chinese New Year.

Lipsey Parent Teacher Association president Suzanne Britt came up with the idea and contacted the Puppet Arts Theatre to perform the show for the students.

“We were just looking for a cultural opportunity for our children,” Britt said. “We wanted them to be exposed to different cultures.”

Lipsey Principal Rita Robinson couldn’t agree more. She wants the students to be educated on more than academics.

“I’m always looking for different avenues and bringing different cultures to our students because so many times our students are not able to see different things,” Robinson said.

Teachers were prepared with language arts, social studies and writing objectives to discuss with their students before and after the play.

The students enjoyed the transformation of the toad into a prince.

They all agreed that his transformation was beautiful.

“My favorite part was when the frog changed to a human,” Diggs said.

“If you think you’re ugly or you don’t look good, don’t – because you’re beautiful inside and out,” Porter said.

The principal plans to bring many more lessons with cultural experiences as the semester goes on, she said.