Thursday, November 11, 2010

Trouble Puppet "Object Theater" Workshop

I am super happy to be a part of this 6 week workshop... Here are the deets:

Trouble Puppet kicks off its Working Artist Workshop Series, a six-session workshop series conducted by artist with specializations in the field of puppetry and related arts. The first workshop will be on Object Theater, facilitated by Caroline Reck, who directed FupDuck as the Visiting Guest Artist this year for Trouble Puppet.

The workshop will have a dual focus on manipulation technique and the of storytelling with objects, with particular attention paid to design choices and appropriate materials. Learn manipulation techniques, using everyday objects as your puppets, and use those objects as a medium for storytelling.

Useful for actors expanding their technique repertoire, designers looking for a new angle on materials, and theater-makers interested in storytelling technique. The workshop will culminate in a showing of short works.

Caroline Reck is a graduate of the Lecoq School of Physical Theatre in Paris, France and has an MFA in Theatre from Towson University’s program for self-producing theatre artists. A performer/ director and frequent collaborator on devised work, her background is in mime, object theatre and puppetry. She worked for two years in Europe with the Paris-based Sous Un Otre Angle, performing an object theatre version of The Musicians of Bremen, which won accolades at the Avignon Festival in France. Her company, Glass Half Full, is currently touring The FupDuck Project, a puppet show with live music, whiskey, and a duck; as well as The Orchid Flotilla, a solo puppetry and gestural performance about ecological disaster and the value of stuff.

Puppets in the Long Center for Performing Arts

The Puppet Improv Project was asked to perform as part of the entertainment at this years B. Iden Payne Awards. The awards are a program of The Greater Austin Creative Alliance, and are awarded annually to recognize outstanding contributions to the Austin theatre community.

The PIP presented some improvisational singing with members from, "Crack! The Improvised Puppet Musical". The cast included Emily Breedlove, Peter Rodgers, Pat Daniel and Sara Farr who all performed with awards host, Les McGehee. We were the last performers of the show and improvised a "Madrigal" style song using quotes from the awards recipiants acceptance speeches. It was well recieved, and we where honored to be a part of the ceremony.

Atlanta, GA & The Center For Puppetry Arts

I meant to post this sooner, but while visiting Atlanta GA for the Black Box Improv Comedy Festival with Get Up (back in September) I got to take myself to the Center for Puppetry Arts

There I got to walk around their museum and read about the history of puppets from around the world. There was a great video made by the Henson Foundation that was Henson having a dialogue with several top puppet masters from different fields of puppetry. There was also a bunch of puppets there on loan, including Big Bird, Dr Teeth, and the Swedish Chef! It was fun to get to look at these puppets up close and read about their history. They also had a section on the NEW form of puppetry -- Motion Graphics and Performance puppetry!!! This is in perfect sync with my own goals for puppetry. Since I work and train others in computer graphics every day, and I have a strong and growing love of puppets, this seems like a natural evolution for where the PIP should move next. However, the technology is still a bit pricey, so it is a FUTURE goal. And though I felt like the performance animation display didn't tell me anything new, I was glad to see them sharing some of the magic behind "Sid the Science Kid". And I felt privileged to have met the Henson puppeteer that operates Sid's head a year ago on my West Coast Puppet Improv Tour (when I went to see him in Puppet Up!).

While at the Center, I got to see a very fun show by Leslie Carrara-Rudolph -- aka "Abby Cadabby" on Sesame Street. Her show celebrated the creative spirit and encouraged kids to make up their own characters. The star of the show was probably LOLLIE! who was very entertaining, with a TINY voice and sugar-induced energy level that was like rocket fuel to the kids in the audience. But there were a ton of fun characters in the show. I hung out after to get a chance to talk, but she was worn out, and had to do several other shows that day, then go host a PUPPET SLAM. So we met, said hello, but that was it. Perhaps we'll get to visit another day.
Leslie is now a part of the Henson Alternative show in NYC that grew out of "Puppet Up" which I saw last year in LA. The new show uses more video (Hmmm!) and I hope to get to go see it some day.

"Stuffed and Unstrung" --