2017: OIympia Waldorf School Struts Its Stuff

by Christian Carvajal for OLY ARTS

Led by Jerry Berebitsky, Olympia Waldorf School has accepted the challenge of portraying a flock—technically, an “ostentation”—of peacocks. That includes at least 30 kid-sized peacock characters and an alpha peacock some 24 feet high, puppeteered by 20 people. The original alpha puppet was created by the Spirit of the Procession Studio. Berebitsky says Waldorf took on the task without knowing exactly how it could be completed in time, especially the puppet’s ornate tail. “What was there,” he explains, “was a faith that the spirit of community in the studio would support our efforts.” That faith was rewarded with what Berebitsky calls “a truly magical experience,” a tribute, he feels, to “the struggle for survival of the wild peacock population in Myanmar.”

The alpha puppet is built on a skeleton of metal and plastic electrical conduit, then muscled with drip-line tubing and skinned, after intense labor, in bird-block netting and fabric scraps. The 2015-2016 second-grade class built peachick costumes, which they now wear as proud peacocks a year later. Artist Janine Miller guided the fifth- and sixth-graders through work on two midsize peacocks. “We hope,” says Berebitsky, “people will be inspired to further their efforts to care for the unique species and long-term viability of our planet.”

What: Olympia Waldorf School

Where: Procession of the Species,
from Jefferson St. and Legion Way to Water St. and Capitol Way, Olympia

When: 4:30 p.m. Saturday, April 29

How much: free

Learn more: 360-493-0906 | Olympia Waldorf School

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