The 122nd meeting of the NY Comics & Picture-story Symposium will be held on Tuesday, April 28, 2015 at 7pm at Parsons The New School, 2 West 13th Street, in the Bark Room (off the lobby). Free and open to the public.
Eric Bernard: A Child’s View: 19th Century Paper Theaters
A rather unique and enchanting entertainment for children emerged at the beginning of the second decade of the 19th century. Before the wide availability of children’s periodicals and mass-produced toys, small tabletop theaters—constructed out of printed paper, adhered to cardboard and mounted on a wooden frame—introduced a unique visual entertainment into homes. Nearly every major European country, as well as the United States, developed its own tradition of paper theater during the 19th century into the early 20th century. It was Juvenile Drama in England, Papiertheater or Kindertheater in Germany, théâtre de papier in France, dukketeater in Denmark, and teatro de los niños or teatrillo in Spain. Today, these small theaters and their vast repertoire of plays remain invaluable records of contemporary professional stage performances and theater design of the 19th century.
Eric Bernard has collected antique paper theaters for 30 years and had an extended exhibition of his collection at the Bruce Museum in Greenwich, Connecticut in 2011. He holds a BA in music from Texas Christian University and an MA in Arts Administration from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. Eric’s career in arts management has included Lincoln Center Theater, the Museum of Modern Art, and, for the past 17 years, the Metropolitan Opera.