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Gondwana comes to life on Canberra stage

21 SEPTEMBER 2005

The prehistoric world of Gondwana comes to life at the National Museum from this Saturday in a epic production featuring full body dinosaur puppets and a giant inflatable garden.

Gondwana: A Live Journey Through Time is debuting at the National Museum after 15 months of development by Sydney company Erth Visual & Physical. Six puppeteers and a myriad of support crew bring the great south land to life using highly sophisticated puppets and sets. The show has a special musical score including live elements performed on hand-crafted, purpose-built instruments.

Erth worked with experts including palaeobotanist Dr Mary White, palaeontologist Professor Mike Archer and animal behaviouralists to ensure the accuracy of the Australian plants and animals they are portraying.

WHAT: Gondwana media call

WHEN: 11am, Friday 23 September, 2005

WHERE: Temporary Gallery, National Museum, Acton

Gondwana features a predatory dwarf allosaur, standing four metres tall and six metres long, operated by one puppeteer inside the dinosaur and another outside, directing the head movements. This prehistoric world is shared with seven-metre high plants, giant dragonflies, ancient sea-dwelling ammonites and many other plants and animals evolving over time.

Palaeobotanist Dr Mary White, Erth artistic director Scott Wright and Daina Harvey from the National Museum will be available for interview after a brief glimpse of the dwarf allosaur caring for his young in the Cretaceous period.

Gondwana will be staged twice daily, except on Mondays, in the cavernous space of the National Museum's Temporary Gallery from 24 September to 9 October. A replica muttabuttasaurus skeleton and two Wollemi pines are also on show in the Hall.

Performances will be held at 11am and 2pm, with special 6pm shows on Friday, 30 September and Saturday, 1 October. Tickets are $5, with bookings on 1800 558 670.

For images, interviews or more information please contact Leanda Coleman on 02 6208 5338,0438 620 710 or email media@nma.gov.au