Tag Archives: puppets

La Mama Puppet Series through Nov. 28th

By Loco 7 Dance Puppet Theatre Company

Through November 28, 2010

With its newest production, “In Retrospect,” LOCO7 Dance Puppet Theatre Company investigates how we each construct our personal memory box:  how we keep our memories fresh and preserve the things that made us who we are.  These include our mothers’ embraces, lost loves, childhood dreams, ideals of youth and struggles of age, loss and birth.

The production features giant puppets, marionette scenery, masks, choreography, acrobatics, live original music and video.  A large marionette tree dangles fruits high above our reach which, when dropped, grow into our memories.  Some of them summon feelings of being loved and secure, others evoke the opposite.  For example, one scene depicts a huge Mother marionette and her little children, revealing the pleasure of hiding within the safety of her giant legs.  Another scene has a puppet telephone and a character waiting for a call with a mixture of dread and excitement.  We are reminded of our emotional dependence on the appliance as a “life line” which can be either a comfort or a monster.

Reflecting the compartmentalization of our feelings, the stage will have a room-within-a-room where a person lives her life locked behind a wall. With this self inflicted alienation, she watches the world living yet remains cut off, unable to interact with society, hiding behind to safety zone of technology.

The production will be designed, choreographed, and directed by Federico Restrepo, a Colombian-born master of puppet theater and physical theater. The piece is being written and developed by Federico Restrepo and Denise Greber. Music will be composed by Elizabeth Swados; this is her fourth collaboration with Restrepo.

Conceived by
Directed by
Music by

Through November 28, 2010

Balli Plastici: Futurist Puppet Show on Nov. 12th

Balli Plastici
Museum of Arts and Design
2 Columbus Circle
Thursday, November 12 6:30pm

In 1918, the Italian Futurist Fortunato Depero premiered his Balli Plastici, a puppet show performed by geometric, fantastical multicolored marionettes. Building an immersive world through set design, music, and puppets, Depero transcended the traditional divide between actors, audiences, and sets, and created an environment completely distinct from ordinary life. Today, the technologists at the Carnegie Mellon Entertainment Technology Center (ETC) have adapted the shapes, colors, and music of the Balli Plastici for the digital age. For Performa ’09, ETC and MAD premiere an animated version of Balli Plastici set to a score re-constructed from original notes.

The ETC is designing a personal interactive DVD version of Balli Plastici that will allow individuals to control the movements of Depero’s animated characters and devise their own combinations of set, music, and lighting. After the performance, attendees will receive a special voucher that will entitle them to receive a copy of the DVD by mail when it is released in December 2009.

Produced by The Carnegie Mellon Entertainment Technology Center and Museum of Arts and Design. Tickets: $10 / $7 Performa and MADMembers at www.madmuseum.org or call 212-299- 77

Quick Hit: Gretchen van Lente and puppets!


Illustration Alum Gretchen van Lente showed up in the NYTimes last month with a write-up about her work with puppets, Kafka, and the Here Arts Center. Here’s a a snippet:

Most of the fun here is in the puppet creations. The bug is a delightful critter concocted from baskets and other odds and ends. A life-size inquisitor (manipulated at times by two puppeteers) has enough body language that you hardly notice his lack of a head. Flexible-necked lamps also come alive, to startling effect.

The puppeteers are fully visible, and the director, Gretchen Van Lente, has a fine time playing with perspective. The humans look like giants. It’s disorienting, and maybe that’s the point.

Read the rest of the write-up here.

Cool work, Gretchen!

Quick Hit: Jim Henson Summer Internship Opportunity


Duties may include shopping assistance both on-line and in person, errands to production locations, on-line research, photo record keeping, packing and shipping, storage management, art /crafts-based tasks as required depending on individual student’s talents and experience. Candidates wishing Creature Shop experience benefit from having basic sewing skills and familiarity with hand and machine tools. Knowledge of Photoshop, Illustrator, and Excel are useful, but not required. A minimum of 16 hours per week are required M-F, with flexible daytime hours. Reliability is essential, as we depend on our interns to help meet production requirements.

If interested, please contact Caty Bartholowmew (our internship coordinator) directly with:

  • A one page resume
  • A cover letter referencing the position you are applying for and specifically stating reasons why you are interested in interning at Henson, and why you feel you would be a good fit for this position and our company.
  • Please cite past work experience or college activities that speak to your qualifications.
  • For Creature Shop applicants, we conduct portfolio review at the time of interviews.

Good luck!