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Children's Festival: Mountain Goat Mountain: a family odyssey

This adventure takes families to a mysterious Australian mountain.
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Threshold, an Australian theatre company, debuts Mountain Goat Mountain for the International Children's Festival. This digital family adventure is now available through the festival website.

The 2021 International Children’s Festival of the Arts’ have primed their audience with Mountain Goat Mountain. 

This digital audio-theatre experience for children five years and older, comes from Threshold, an Australian performance company. All one needs to complete family adventure is a computer, piece of paper, pencil, and a bedsheet. 

While most feature shows are available June 4 to 6, Mountain Goat Mountain has been accessible for viewing since May 21. 

Tickets for a current showing are $18. After purchasing a ticket, recipients will receive an email containing a unique link to listen to the performance any time for 30 days. 

Australian co-founders Tahli Corin and Sarah Lockwood were unable to provide a telephone interview due to logistics. However, they emailed their thoughts. 

Q. Why did you initially see a need for a show such as Mountain Goat Mountain
A. As parents ourselves, we were aware that there was a tension during lockdown where we were spending more time together as a family than ever before. But without any sense of occasion, or a known end-point, each day was blending into the next. 
So, we began to consider how we could create something to enrich this time together, to activate families to engage with each other in new ways. 
Q. Does Mountain Goat Mountain have a plot? 
A. It certainly does! Mountain Goat Mountain takes place in two acts. 
In Act One of the experience, the family is guided through a set of activities that help them prepare their costumes, props, secret family code, and prepare the space for their performance. Act One is voiced by a child – which not only empowers the children to take the lead, but invites parents to enter a play space. 
In Act Two a narrative soundscape reveals the story of the mystery of a mountain goat – like creatures that may (or may not) live on Mountain Goat Mountain. The family is transported onto the mountain, moving through it, swimming through underground rivers, crossing lava pits, and losing each other in the fog in search of the mysterious goat-like creature. All the while, the mountain has been watching them, observing their moments of kindness and connection. 
Q. What is the focus of Mountain Goat Mountain
A. The creative team started with the points of connection, our desire for a sense of expansion and connection with nature during this time of confinement, and we began to experiment around these ideas with our own families. 
The whole experience was created via Zoom – so testing out ideas with our families was all we could do to discover what worked and what didn't.
Ultimately, we created a framework that empowers families to build their own theatrical worlds. As theatre makers we’re accustomed to shaping every element of the production – but through these new works we’re collaborating with families in a different way, creating moments of magic and wonder that we will never see and providing space for a playful intimacy. 

Anna Borowiecki

About the Author: Anna Borowiecki

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