Photograph by Seth Butler / sethbutler.com

Royal Frog Ballet Returns to Fable Farm


Submitted a year ago
Created by
Chloe Powell

The Royal Frog Ballet,  a collective of friends and artists scattered about the country, comes together each fall to create a "Surrealist Cabaret." The group returns to collaborate with Fable Farm in Barnard this fall, and will present their roving theatrical performance at the site of Feast and Field, Friday, Saturday and Sunday September 29, and 30th, and October 1st at 5 PM. For more info visit theroyalfrogballet.com

Photograph by Seth Butler / sethbutler.com


This year's performances will explore the theme of the root. 

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“We’re riffing on what it means to get at the root, be rooted, or what a root even is, rooting for things, rooting out things, and all the metaphors regarding how something starts, grows, feeds...We’re asking: what happens in the dark, what our relationship is to things that happen in the dark, in secret, in invisibility, in mystery, in the unknown? ” says Sophie Wood, co-founder of the collective. “But, funny and in sequins, too.”

Their work is something that must be experienced-- it is hard to do justice with words, but I attempted to use words to describe it after I saw them two years ago. 

photo by Seth Butler/sethbutler.com

My review of the 2015 Performance

Friday, I went for a journey in my own town and I was reintroduced to the land at the site of Feast and Field Market. At sunset, a group gathered around a campfire awaiting the start of a Surrealist Cabaret with the Royal Frog Ballet,  not really sure exactly what to expect.

Photograph by Seth Butler / sethbutler.com

Three women dressed as grandmas with paper-mache’ masks waited in complete character as the audience arrived. They were to be our guides for a walk through the land which many of us in the audience already knew so well. 

photo by Seth Butler/Sethbutler.com

With the almost-full moon overhead and the changing sky as a backdrop, we stopped along the way for a series of stories, songs, and poems reintroducing us to ourselves, one another and the land. Nature’s backdrop was as much a character as the people in the company, and with themes of migration and finding home, geese took their cue and flew overhead, coyotes sang, and the darkness and coolness arrived inviting us to the warmth and light of the fire for a fireside prayer to close the show. 

Photograph by Seth Butler / sethbutler.com

It was a celebration of the power of art, and of our beautiful home to provide the space to ask those big questions that bring us closer to one another and ourselves, to feeling and knowing some universal truth. 

What are we here for if not to see the beauty of our home and the humanity in our neighbors?  What is our role on this earth if not to preserve, celebrate and create beauty?  What is the point if not love?

It is hard to do this show justice with words, and it is truly something that must be experienced.   Third-grader Horace Morel in three words described it as "cool, fun, and weird."  He did a pretty good job picking words, but again....it is magic that must be experienced. 

Photograph by Seth Butler / sethbutler.com

To grab tickets and more information on the Royal Frog Ballet this year, visit: 

theroyalfrogballet.com

For more info on Fable Farm visit: fablefarmfermentory.com

For more info on the location: visit feastandfield.com

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