Puppets in action

【导读】Ouye members have a close bond with puppets on and off stage “偶耶”组合:人偶合一,点亮舞台

Puppet show group Ouye performs on the TV program Super Sketch Show 2IQIYI

Months ago, the puppet show group Ouye made its name with the puppet show Paper Man on the TV program Super Sketch Show 2. The show tells a growing-up story about a kraft paper boy, as well as the love between him and his father.

This group has six members who graduated from the department of puppetry theater of The Central Academy of Drama.

Zeng Mengsha, 21, played the kraft paper boy during his childhood period. “I am a girl, but when I play the little boy, I need to change my voice and design movements to match the role,” she said.

The puppets are all made by the puppeteers themselves.“Puppeteers and their puppets are an integral whole on the stage. We communicate and express ourselves through our puppets.”

Gao Yiran, 22, another member of Ouye, agreed, “A puppet show is a good choice for someone like me who is introverted but loves acting. With my puppets, I don’t feel lonely or nervous onstage.”

Their shows are full of creativity. “A puppeteer needs to be an all-rounder. In school, we learned not only how to perform but also prop making, stage and light designing, script writing and directing,” Zeng said.

The young puppeteers experiment with making puppets from all different materials. They also blend traditional Chinese puppet shows with Western styles. In some of their shows, they use Chinese rod puppets together with Western masks. Although in most traditional Chinese puppet shows, puppeteers are hidden behind curtains, Ouye tries to make their shows more modern by standing beside their puppets and performing together.

“For us, the puppets are just like partners and friends with lives and souls,” Gao said.

By GUI QIAN and HUANG XUEMENG, 21st Century Teens

Zeng Mengsha (front), Gao Yiran (2nd from the right) and other members of puppet show group Ouye.  IQIYI

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