Madame Modjeska's Fairytale

Dance, Physical Theatre and Circus (physical theatre, storytelling)

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Winner of LA Times' Best Production and OC Weekly's Best Play awards, acclaimed director Annie Loui and CounterBalance Theater present the worldwide premiere of yet another 'deliciously spirited production' (LA Times): Madame Modjeska’s Fairytale. Whimsical and imaginative, this hybrid physical theater-animation film follows Victorian fantasy characters as they explore the canyons surrounding Arden, a fairytale written by renowned Polish Shakespearean actress Helena Modjeska. Having relocated to the Wild West of Southern California in 1890, Modjeska’s cultural influence stretched across the region. Her estate and namesake canyon, both featured in this film, remain Southern California landmarks.

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General venue access

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  • Wheelchair access type: Not fully wheelchair accessible

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Anca Maniutiu 145 days ago

We enjoyed very much this show. It is a magical mix of childlike candidness and complex means of expression. We were touched by the subtle and artful way the words, the dances, the music and the graphics combined.

We highly recommend this show to audiences of all ages.

Anca Maniutiu and Mihai Maniutiu

Mary Lee Lindquist 149 days ago

I was delighted to watch this multi-visual retelling of Madam Modjeska's Fairytale book, which she wrote for her grandson while recovering from a paralytic stroke. This piece not only captures the artistry of the book, but also adds a surreal element to the story. The dancers are magnificent as they are entwined into the illustrations. The piece is mesmerizing.

Joel Veenstra 155 days ago

Beautifully crafted visual feast - such a joy to experience! It took me back to my childhood and the pleasures of exploring the world through fresh eyes. Congrats to all the artists involved. It was captivating.

James Charney 156 days ago

A kaleidoscope of images music and dance. Bizarre, beautiful, haunting. And with a rather grisly fairy tale story.

Sarah Sarkissian 157 days ago

Definitely enjoyed this piece. I was prepared for a simple narrative and was instead surprised by this very abstract piece. loved the overlay of live actors and the kaleidoscopic graphics. I would like to be able to listen to the music solo snd then rewatch the piece. Does Counterbalance a theater group have any other pieces streaming?

DONALD MILLICAN 158 days ago

Very creative and entertaining. Awesome performance by the dancers. Would like to see more of their work.

Jane Page 160 days ago

Just a lovely magical performance! Beautifully done in every way: vision, choreography, performance, artwork, music and sound and voice actor. A must see! Congratulations to all.

Lisa Kermode 163 days ago

Madame Madjeska was put back to life with her fairy tale. The choreography was magical and enchanting with a gruesome story a bout the little children which made me want to watch even more.

Lillian Barbeito 164 days ago

This was a very strange and wonderful film; Fantasia-esque transitions and psychedelic qualities. Bizarre and fantastic! Loved the dancing in particular!

Laura Jaoui 164 days ago

It is a treat to watch this creative re-telling of "Madame Modjeska's Fairytail". Modjeska's 19th century out-of-this-world fairytale uses a kaleidescope of lushly colorful animations, live-action dancers, and illustrations drawn by Madame Modjeka herself, I believe. The sound design is particularly enjoyable, elevating and enhancing the visuals. It was interesting to learn from a Google search that Madam Modjeska talents inspired other artists, among them Susan Sontag and perhaps Arthur Conan Doyle. And, with this film, she continues to inspire.

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North West End (4/5 stars) 149 days ago

Madame Modjeska’s Fairytale is a beautiful and surreal piece of theatre, which puts a truly unique spin on storytelling.

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Theatre Weekly (3/5 stars) 149 days ago

an imaginative take on history

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Participants - for further details on our audience and published review policies, including how to add or opt out of reviews, please click here.