Thursday, November 18, 2010

Boy Scout Puppet Workshop!

What a great experience tonight! I had the honor of leading a Boy Scout workshop tonight in Ossining!
I started off the workshop by explaining how I came to puppeteering...trial and error career-wise, and then showed the first puppets that I made-Baby, then Gertrude...on to Fishie and Encephalopod, then Wormie, Bluebird, KooKoo, Parrot, Nicey Nice....through the whole gang. It was neat for me to see all of the puppets lined up (Rainbow Wiggles was absent tonight. He had a gig).

The Boy Scouts were amazing listeners-engaged, funny and sweet, and then they had a chance to take the puppets for a ride. The rule was-no puppet fights. Gentle puppets. After the boys had a chance to play with my puppets, it was time for them to do some creating.

At the craft table, the boys experimented with materials as they developed their puppets. I was MAJORLY impressed. Some of the materials that were used were: egg crates, chopsticks, plastic cups, pipe cleaners, an oatmeal container, tights, socks, feathers, (did anyone end up using the yogurt containers?) polyfil, plastic gloves, shoe boxes, paint and markers, pom poms....
I am probably missing a few!
Their puppets were masterful. I am truly blown away by their creativity. The boys in the Boy Scout Puppet Workshop in Ossining tonight are fantastic puppeteers.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Preparing for shows

Hi there! I am next to my youngest child, who is curled up on my left shoulder. She woke up just as I was wrapping up a lovely puppet hospital session with the puppets. I am performing at a birthday party tomorrow afternoon,and felt that certain puppets needed some tender loving care before 'going public" again. So, KooKooBird received some GLOW IN THE DARK paint decoration and some new chest hair (a kid innocently ripped that off one day). Parrot, whose plumage melted in the brutal summer heat of 2010, was adorned with some translucent purple tile pieces and a beautiful yellow retro necklace! She looks like a new bird. I can't wait until she gets a look at herself in the mirror (once the glue dries). And then I added some leaves and beads to the MAGIC MIRROR. And yes, they were glittery leaves and luminescent beads!

I wish that I could have been writing earlier before I was so sleepy, because I love this part of the process. It reminds me of when I watch my kids with stuffed animals, and it's not all fantasy, because the children genuinely care about their animals while they are playing with them. They cultivate a relationship as they play-act, just as I truly love and care for my puppets. And I don't feel nuts about this! It's a relationship with an artistic creation that is intended to be brought to life to enchant and entertain young children. I am excited to use these puppets tomorrow because now they have a slightly new dimension to them. I doubt that any of the kids will notice, but I have a more developed sense of the puppet as it moves along this new trajectory. I feel like Parrot will be thrilled about her facelift! Whaddaya think?