5+, 45'
    Puppet musical performance about a girl Tonka who plays with the sounds of the night and conquers fear.

    Text by Peter Kus, Tery Žeželj
    Directed, music and musical instruments by Peter Kus
    Dramaturgy by Tery Žeželj
    Art design by Gregor Lorenci
    Costumes by Iztok Hrga
    Choreography by Alicia Ocadiz
    Light design by Borut Bučinel

    Performed by Urška Cvetko, Elena Voli/Petra Kavaš, Miha Bezeljak, Michael Pöllmann
    Produced by Maribor Puppet Theater, Werk89 (Vienna), Kuskus

    Supported by Ministry of Culture Republic of Slovenia, City of Maribor, City of Vienna, City of Ljubljana, Bundesministerium für Bildung, Wissenschaft und Kultur Republik Österreich, Österreichisches Kulturforum Laibach

    technical requirements
    lightning plan
    press photos

    Lutkovno gledališče Maribor

    Foto: Boštjan Lah


    »Nighthawks are a good fairy tale… Peter Kus’s instruments are always fascinating puppets. This time, the art design of Gregor Lorenci and elaborated concept of lighting, elevate them to the undescribably complex beings. Also in acting and animation, the Nighthawks are the show of new generation – for agile musical multi-talents, that have spontaneity and joy in acting. «, Petra Vidali, Večer, 4. 2. 2020

    »The show has definitely a noble message – but above all, it is an ode to music. It transforms from its usual role in theater as a background sound, supporting the action, to the center of happening. First, there was the sound, then cam the story. First, there was a concert, then the applause – and it came well deserved (with a rocking musical piece as the highlight) from the younger and older audience«, Sandra Schäfer, Kulturfüchsin, 9. 2. 2020

    »Ingenious sound creations, made by a rewarded puppet designer Gregor Lorenci, create magic in this enchanted night, at which children motionlessly and wordlessly stare. I as well have succumbed to the magic of this musical and puppet theater. Whenever I will hear something squealing, grumbling, whistling through the cracks or rustling under the bed, I will imagine the sounding of Nighthawks. The fear is afraid of the brave. At least that is what Tonka is saying.« Ditta Rudle, Tanzschrift, 8. 2. 2020

    »The story is about how Tonka confronts fear, coming from indefinite noise, by playing her own sounds. It intermixes with philosophical thoughts about acoustics around us... From the cacophonous fight harmonious music-making is born.« Heinz Wagner, Kurier, 11. 2. 2020

    »The show elevates the concept of “instrument” to a new level. At night the instruments that appear to be between costume and sound, between puppet and ‘one-man-band’ become alive… Suddenly it is not any more clear who is playing who – do the bodies produce sounds or does the music move the bodies.«



    In our lives, we are constantly exposed to sounds. These are not only the sounds of the natural environment but above all the sounds of civilization: the rumble of traffic, the rattle of machines and factories, voices, cries, and constant music that comes from the speakers. Ears do not have lids and cannot be closed. We cannot just turn away when we do not want to hear something as we can do when we do not want to see something. So, we are constantly exposed to the noisiness of our environment.

    We get used to everyday noise. Eventually, we only respond to sounds that are (too) loud for us. Our hearing is awakened from the dullness by the silence as we become alert to the sounds coming from the silence. This happens at night when the city life slows down, silent sounds in the dark sound like mighty, and the ordinary sounds become eerie.

    In such a situation, familiar to all of us, finds herself girl Tonka when going to bed in the evening. Terrified of the invisible nocturnal sounds, that she does not recognize and thinks they are burglars, she calls her mom and dad. They try to make her understand that what she hears are just ordinary sounds. She only has to imagine how each sound is created and she will no longer be afraid. But Tonka does not dare to close her eyes and cannot imagine the origin of the individual sounds, so her mother tries to explain the sonic world to her with the help of an instructive fairy tale of Miss Cacophony. Miss Cacophony is a mythical sound monster, as old as the world, that combines all the known and unknown sounds, sends them into the world, and controls them. When Miss Cacophony falls asleep, some of the sounds slip away and come to life in the dark night. The image of Miss Cacophony immediately ignites Tonka’s curiosity. Each of the nocturnal sounds now presents a different sound monster. All of a sudden, her room is full of strange sound creatures, Nighthawks. She gets to know them, makes music with them, and discovers new music worlds. Thus, in the midst of an inarticulate cacophony in which we are forced to live, Tonka creates her sound environment. A frightened child becomes a creative and independent girl. With her determination, she shows us how valuable the sonic world is for our personal growth and how, through active and creative listening, we can also discover the essence of ourselves and our existence. The sonic violence of the modern world cannot be avoided by escaping from the world of sounds and civilization (such a solution is impractical, if not impossible), but we can avoid it by finding the right sound, our music and the meaning in the cacophony of the world around us. In this way, each of us can find in the midst of this cacophony his or her own inner balance and his or her own silence.


    • Dschungel Wien, Vienna (Austria), February 7th to 13th 2020
    • Dschungel Wien, Vienna (Austria), October 1st to 5th 2020