Friday, March 24, 2017

La Machine

La Machine is a street theatre company based in Nantes, France. The group was formed by artists, designers, fabricators and technicians in 1999 and is currently led by Artistic Director, François Delarozière.

La Machine is famous for their extraordinary theatrical machines, permanent installations and their own theatrical productions. Some of their past work includes:

2006 - Sultan's Elephant

The Sultan's Elephant was created as part of a show by the same name produced by the Royal de Luxe theatre company. Weighing in at 42 tons the elephant required 22 manipulators to operate.

According to this article from The Guardian, The Sultan's Elephant no longer exists as the "Royal de Luxe were so fed up with being invited all over the world to perform The Sultan's Elephant, they just destroyed it."

2007 - The Great Elephant

A non-exact replica of the Sultan's Elephant was built in 2007 as part of the Machines of the Isle of Nantes permanent exhibit. The main difference between the two is that The Great Elephant was designed to carry up to 49 passengers (it also appears to be far less animated, likely due to it being more of a ride for tourist which no doubt requires far fewer operators).

2008 - La Princesse

La Princesse is a 50 foot mechanical spider which was first showcased in Liverpool, England as part of the 2008 European Capital of Culture celebration. Weighing in at 37 tonnes, the spider has 50 axes of movement and is operated by up to 12 people strapped to its body.

2014 Long Ma

Standing at 40 feet tall and weighing in at 46 tons, the fire breathing dragon-horse Long Ma faced off against La Princesse as part of an event in Beijing celebrating 50 years of diplomatic relations between France and China.

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