Breaking Down “Nufonia Must Fall”
April 5, 2017
Part puppet show, part epic live score, “Nufonia Must Fall” from the Canadian wunderkind DJ Kid Koala, is an emotional showcasing of love, life, and self-reflection that uses a tone deaf robot as a means to dig into these profound human feelings. Currently on a national tour, the performance hits Downtown’s Olympia Theater this Saturday, April 8th and we’ll tell you right now: it definitely shouldn’t be missed. Everyone’s been talking about how mind-blowing the performance is…but what exactly is it?
1. It’s a Graphic Novel.
Originally published in 2003, “Nufonia Must Fall” was first released as a graphic novel by Kid Koala himself. The original publication was accompanied by a soundtrack meant to be played alongside reading, also by the multi-dimensional musician. In short: It’s about a tone-deaf robot who falls in love and attempts to use cacophonous music as the tool and catalyst to win over his target. It’s dark yet heartwarming in every way.
2. It’s All Puppets.
Once the graphic novel was published, the story was now brought to life using starkly white puppets contrasted on a dark-hued backdrop. These handmade creations on multiple miniature stages are all choreographed and projected live on a towering screen. The elaborate action is directed by K.K. Barrett, recently Oscar-nominated for Her and the production designer for Being John Malkovich.
3. It’s Live Scored.
Well it wouldn’t be a Kid Koala thing without some badass music. Taking the score he created alongside the original graphic novel, the artist has enlisted the ultra-talented and dynamic Afiara Quartet to provide the live score for this silent film. The JUNO-nominated Afiara Quartet continues to expand what it means to be a performing ensemble in the 21st century.
4. It All Comes to Life.
“Part of the enjoyment is glancing from the screen to the dimly lighted stage, seeing the puppeteers move from backdrop to backdrop and watching the ingenuity of the perspective and the minuscule gestures that translate into big-screen drama.”
– The New York Times