Wanderkook Adventure A Great Success

Pictured above:  Gnome Guide Natalie Boyer greets guests and presents them with a map and puzzle piece;  Kaidance Boynton proudly shows off the Mangrove Tribe Manatee while fellow tribemates Joey Jolly and Louis Zumbach pose with their musical instruments; Members of the Coconut Tribe prepare to harvest marshmallows; The worker bees in the Honey Bee tribe work to fill the honeycomb and members of the Volcano Tribe  and The Down Under Tribe share their version of Wanderkook’s adventure with their audiences; Finally, members of the Jungle Tribe work with Circulus Arts staff to perfect their performance.

Ashland Elementary Students, in conjunction with the incredibly talented artists of Circulus Arts, created an immersive and interactive exhibit, which told the story of imaginary explorer Oliver Z. Wanderkook’s adventures.

Throughout an eight week Artist In Residency program, students pieced together their version of Wanderkook’s last expedition.  Along the way, the students created tribes, where members worked together, to reveal Wanderkook’s last adventure through original music, dance, animation, and spoken word. 

Parents and community members began their adventure with a welcome from a Gnome Guide who provided the guests with a trail map and a puzzle piece.  As guests visited the Mangrove Tribe, the Coconut Tribe, the Way Down Under Tribe, the Honey Bee Tribe, the Jungle Tribe and the Volcano Tribes they enjoyed exciting and imaginative student presentations portraying a portion of Wanderkook’s travels.  Each tribe also presented visitors with an additional puzzle piece from their land and at the end of the evening, the completed puzzle revealed Wanderkook’s final location.

Following the interactive exhibit, the program moved to the gym for the Spring Concert.  Students enjoyed performing some of their original Wanderkook songs along with other pieces of music from around the world.

Circulus Arts is a creative studio that produces live performance work rooted in cross-disciplinary collaboration.  The Circular Arts team included Co-Founders/ Producers Jonny Peiffer and Catherine Stewart along with illustrator and artist, Sam Paolini.

This integrated project was made possible in part by a grant from the NH Council for the Arts (NHCATE).