Puppeteers of America (PofA) is a national non-profit organization founded in 1937 to provide information, encourage performances, and build a community of people who celebrate puppet theatre. We support puppeteers and advance the art of puppetry by presenting knowledge, providing inspiration and promoting preservation.

The specific purpose of Puppeteers of America, Inc. is educational. To instruct the public and raise awareness about puppetry as a means of communication, an extension of human expression, and as a performing art. This includes teaching the community about the importance of puppetry as well as enhancing the proficiency of the Art of Puppetry, both professional and amateur, by publications, educational materials, workshops, forums, conventions, festivals, panels, lectures, advisory services, and all other means and methods.

Traditionally, the PofA has welcomed the public for a specific community day event. A time to explore and engage with the beloved world of puppetry. The 2023 Festival will honor this practice and will expand our outreach to the greater Maryland and DC area. We will be working with local partners to bring communities each day to experience a mini-festival filled with skill-building workshops, performances, exhibits and more! Puppet curious? Members of the public are also welcome to explore our public programming, historical Puppetry Exhibit, and other memorable events for the whole family. Make sure to plan for the Community Puppetry Parade on Saturday, July 22 from 2:00 pm - 3:30pm.  All puppets (and people) are welcome!

Tuesday, July 18th, 3:00pm "Community Performance"

Hoff Theatre - Stamp Student Union

Aanika’s Elephants is the story of a young African girl who meets a baby elephant (Little) at the orphanage where her father works. They grow together the way only two young girls can, even if one has a trunk. When Aanika’s father dies, she becomes the ward of an abusive uncle. She flees into the African Savannah making one final farewell to Little. Camping that night in the bush the way her father taught her, she is frightened by crashing branches and discovers Little has followed her. They become a herd of two, working together to survive and steer clear of humanity. Adopted by a small herd of elephants, Aanika learns their very beautiful, civil ways. She is finally tested when she must save her new family from poachers.

In a time when children are feeling so much division and stress, Aanika’s Elephants is play about compassion, love and conservation. It’s a story that shows how family can be anything — a beloved, widowed father or even a herd of elephants. The audience can use their imaginations to fill in the large rattan-framed elephants, adorable baby elephant and people represented by just hats and gloves. With music, a variety of puppets and humor, Aanika’s Elephants entertains and educates both adults and children on the plight of the elephant and our world.

View a Teaser Clip

About The Company

Annie Evans: (writer/producer) Has written children’s television for the past twenty-five years, most notably for Sesame Street (13 Emmy Awards) as well as for shows on Nickelodeon, PBS, Discovery Channel, Disney Channel and Animal Planet. She has taught writing for children around the world and story edited for Sesame Street co-productions in Bangladesh, India and Indonesia. She is also a playwright having had plays produced at such theatres as New York Stage and Film Company, Manhattan Class Company and the Circle Repertory Lab. She is a graduate of Brown University.

Pam Arciero: (director) Pam Arciero performs for film, television and theater, notably as a puppeteer with Sesame Street (Grundgetta Grouch, Oscar's girlfriend, and assorted characters) and with the Muppets for over 35 years. Pam is a director of live theater, television, and film. She choreographs and directs live walkaround (the big versions of the puppets) shows for Sesame Workshop in such far-flung places as Jamaica, Turks and Caicos, Barcelona, and Saudi Arabia, as well as Sesame Place and Sea World, USA. She is the Artistic Director of the National Puppetry Conference at the O'Neill Theater Center. Pam holds a master’s degree in Puppetry Arts from the University of Connecticut and a Bachelor's Degree in Dance and Dramatic Arts from the University of Hawaii.

Martin P. Robinson: (puppet designer/builder) Broadway: Little Shop of Horrors (designer/performer); The Frogs (designer). Off Broadway: Little Shop of Horrors (Drama Desk, L.A. Drama Critics, Villager Awards); Go, Diego Go! National Tour (puppet designer); Film: Muppets Take Manhattan, Follow That Bird, Elmo in Grouchland, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, The Producers.  TV: Sesame Street– 41 years playing Mr. Snuffleupagus, Telly Monster, Slimey, etc. Currently playing Mr. Primm on the new Sesame Street/Apple TV show “Helpsters.”

Program Language: English   Availability: Public - All Ages   Programs: Youth Ticket & Community Days

Wednesday, July 19th

Session 1, Wednesday July 19th: 9:00 am - 10:00 am

Fairytale Puppet Time with Gabrielle

Children Only!

Come! Let us join as a group to sing, play a movement game or two, hear a beautiful, enchanting fairy tale, and make some simple puppets inspired by the characters we met in our story. Children will be guided by an experienced Waldorf Teacher to rhythmically engage the head, heart and hands in order to embody the values and lessons that only the art of storytelling can teach us.

Suggested Age Range: 6-10 years old


.Workshop Language: English     Workshop Level: Beginner     Program: Youth Ticket

Session 2, Wednesday July 19th: 10:30 am - 12:00 pm

Oven Mitt Dragon Workshop by Heidi Carpenter/Injest Puppets


In this workshop, we will turn a Dollar Store oven mitt into a DRAGON PUPPET!

Each participant will get an oven mitt with one extra stitch to form a snout,

a template sheet, and all the materials needed to complete a simple Dragon puppet.

We will be using hot-glue with adult supervision.

This workshop is perfect for kids and beginners and the techniques they

learn can be applied to other puppet projects as well!

Suggested Age Range: 6-10 years old

.Workshop Language: English     Workshop Level: Beginner    Programs: Youth Ticket 


Puppetry 101 by Aretta Baumgartner

Puppets have been used to tell stories since theatre began, and can be found everywhere from stage to screen. Puppetry celebrates all aspects of the arts and is a “must-have” skill on every artists’ resume! Every human is GREAT at puppetry, hard-wired to use objects to communicate--this means YOU! Learn about puppets from all over the world, dive into actor-to-puppeteer exercises and have a blast in a puppet skills boot camp! www.puppet.org

Suggested Age Range: 6-17 years old

Workshop Language: English     Workshop Level: Beginner    Programs: Youth Ticket


Paper Craft  Marionette by Gavin Cummins

Learn to make a simple marionette with paper. Participants will be guided through the process of making a marionette with construction paper, glue, and popsicle sticks. An excellent way to dip your feet into the craft of making puppets.



Suggested Age Range: 6-10 years old



.Workshop Language: English     Workshop Level: Beginner    Programs: Youth Ticket

Wednesday, July 19th, 1:00pm a Community Days Performance

"Salmagundi! The Puppet Variety Show" - Gavin Cummins

A collection of short puppet shows by Gavin Cummins.

Bio

Gavin Cummins is a puppeteer and artistic director of Thistle Theatre located in Seattle. Gavin began his puppetry career as a performer at Thistle Theatre with founder Jean Enticknap. Gavin co-founded the Fussy Cloud Puppet Slam and collaborated with Red Legg Dance Company, Book-It Repertory Theatre, Seattle Shakespeare Company, Seattle Solstice Parade and others. He received an MFA in Puppet Arts from the University of Connecticut. Responding to the pandemic he helped develop the Drive-In Puppet Show. Gavin has taught and lectured at BIMP, Northern Arizona University, University of Connecticut, Phoenix Art Museum and the National Puppetry Festival. He was an Emerging Artist at the National Puppetry Conference and selected 3 times to the National Puppet Slam.

Program Language: English   Availability: Public - All Ages   Programs: Youth Ticket & Community Days

CANCELLED "Ladyfingers, Jr." - Pam Severns

Pam Severns is an LA-based comedian and puppeteer praised by the LA Times as being “renowned for her unorthodox take on classic puppetry.”

A Jim Henson Foundation grant recipient, she has performed on the stages of the Jim Henson Company, Coachella, and SF Sketchfest. Pam has also worked on TV projects with IFC, PBS, MTV and more.

Her award-winning film Bunny Love is available on Amazon Prime. You can find her on social media as @thepamsevern

Program Language: English   Availability: Public - All Ages   Programs: Youth Ticket & Community Days

Wednesday, July 19th, 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Meet The Artist Hosted by Carole D'Agostino


Carole D'Agostino presents "Meet The Artist," honoring the festival tradition established by Allelu Kurten. An intimate interview session with specially selected artists before a live audience, Carole asks direct questions that always receive the most fascinating responses! Learn how your favorite artists got started, how they like to work, what keeps them motivated, and where they see the future of puppetry. Audience questions will be welcomed.



Program Language: English       Program: Community Days

Wednesday, July 19th, 2:30 pm - 3:30 pm

African American Puppet Modernism: Alice Swann and the Wonderland Puppet Theatre

by Dr. Paulette Richards

In the summer of 1961, Nancy Schmale saw Bil and Cora Baird’s puppet play, “The Magic Onion” featured in Woman’s Day magazine and persuaded her neighbor, Alice Swann, that they should put on the show even though neither of them had any experience performing with puppets. They went on to found the Wonderland Puppet Theatre and performed together for over twenty years.  Dr. Paulette Richards will present the chapter from her book, Object Performance in the Black Atlantic: The United States that covers the Wonderland Puppet Theatre.



Program Language: English       Program: Community Days

Wednesday, July 19th, 4:00 pm

Full-length Film Screening



Selected full length film screenings presented by the Reel Puppetry Film Festival.

Selections will be announced in late spring 2023.


                                        Program Language: TBD     Availability: Public - ages TBD   Programs: Community Days
Thursday, July 20th

Session 1, Thursday July 20th: 9:00 am - 10:00 am

Oven Mitt Dragon Workshop by Heidi Carpenter/Injest Puppets


In this workshop, we will turn a Dollar Store oven mitt into a DRAGON PUPPET!

Each participant will get an oven mitt with one extra stitch to form a snout,

a template sheet, and all the materials needed to complete a simple Dragon puppet.

We will be using hot-glue with adult supervision.

This workshop is perfect for kids and beginners and the techniques they

learn can be applied to other puppet projects as well!

Suggested Age Range: 6-10 years old

Workshop Language: English     Workshop Level: Beginner    Programs: Youth Ticket

Session 2, Thursday July 20th: 10:30 am - 12:00 pm

Roly Poly Puppets by Goat on a Boat

Using recycled materials, baubles and other fun supplies

kids can make their own puppets. Easy Peasy!

Suggested Age Range: 5-12 years old

Workshop Language: English     Workshop Level: Beginner   

Programs: Youth Ticket & Community Days


Heads up!

This workshop consists of creating a whimsical Luchador or Luchadora (wrestler) Mask Puppet Head with two paper cups that can be brought home. The eyelids will be pre-cut to facilitate time managing and eye-moving effect. Additional materials will be supplied to participants to create their own puppet face.

Workshop duration:  20 to 30 minutes.

Suggested Age Range: 5-12 years old. Parental Assistance for those under 5.

Workshop Language: Spanish/English     Workshop Level: Beginner   

Programs: Youth Ticket & Community Days


Thursday, July 20th, 1:00pm a Community Days Performance

"Fox Fables" - Chad Williams of WonderSpark Puppets

What makes you - YOU? Fox Fables is a combination of several Aesop's Fables, inspired by the works of the 12th century storyteller Rabbi Berechiah ha-Nakdan. The story is about a fox who loses his precious tail and with it his identity. He tries to be several other animals instead - with hilarious results - before realizing the moral lesson of this ancient fable. Themes in this tale include self-worth, anti-bullying, test taking, and the five senses.


WonderSpark Puppets is a New York City based puppet theater company led by Chad Williams and Z Briggs. The company's mission is to spread joy, spark imagination and share laughter through high quality puppet performances. They have toured internationally, bringing original productions and puppetry workshops to festivals in Thailand and Taiwan. Their original solo puppet shows were official selections at the International Puppet Fringe Festival NYC, La MaMa Etc Puppet Festival, the Siam Paragon Asean Fascinating Puppets Festival in Thailand, and at the 1st Lize International Puppet Festival in Taiwan. Their works have been performed at the 14th Street Y Theater, Puppet Showplace Theater, Symphony Space, and at the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center. Facebook & Instagram: @wondersparkpuppets

Program Language: English   Availability: Public - All Ages   Programs: Youth Ticket & Community Days

Thursday, July 20th, 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Meet The Artist Hosted by Carole D'Agostino


Carole D'Agostino presents "Meet The Artist," honoring the festival tradition established by Allelu Kurten. An intimate interview session with specially selected artists before a live audience, Carole asks direct questions that always receive the most fascinating responses! Learn how your favorite artists got started, how they like to work, what keeps them motivated, and where they see the future of puppetry. Audience questions will be welcomed.


Program Language: English      Program: Community Days

Thursday, July 20th, 4:00 pm

Full-length Film Screening



Selected full length film screenings presented by the Reel Puppetry Film Festival.

Selections will be announced in late spring 2023.


                                        Program Language: TBD     Availability: Public - ages TBD   Programs: Community Days

Thursday, July 20th, 4:00pm a Community Days Performance

"Give Me a Hand" - Laurencio Ruiz

Give Me a Hand is an unforgettable duo of puppets with aa-nhu-maa-tuh-pee-uh, (onomatopoeia) names, Brrrt and Thrrr in which audience members have the opportunity to interact and explore the other side of puppetry. This bilingual interactive performance invites people from the audience to be part of two or three puppet's sketches, as a puppeteer. That is, we ask audience members to come up on stage and ‘give’ his/her right hand or left and becomes the puppet's hand. Together we complete different tasks, such as magic tricks drawing, cutting, blowing and twisting.

Laurencio Ruiz is a Lecturer of scenic design and puppetry at the Penn State School of Theatre. He holds an M.F.A. in Scenic Design from Penn State School of Theatre, and a B.A. in Graphic Design from Universidad Autónoma de Mexico, where he also studied visual arts. His experience as a trans-disciplinary designer and artist includes sets, costumes, puppets, masks, and props for cabaret, theater, television and film in Mexico and the U.S. Since his involvement with puppetry, he has been creating, directing, and performing original puppet shows at the Eugene O’Neil Theatre Center as an Emergent Artist, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, the Philly Fringe Festival among other venues. He also received the Excellence and Variety Award in the field of short form adult puppet theatre by the National Puppet Slam Network, presented at the National Puppetry Festival in UConn, 2015; the KCACTF Certificate of Merit for Outstanding Scenic and Costume design for ‘Picnic’ in 2012, and for ‘Medea’ in 2006; the PSU College of Arts and Architecture Creative Achievement in Theatre Award in 2001.

Program Language: Spanish/English     Availability: Public - All Ages    Programs: Youth Ticket & Community Days

30 minutes running time

Friday, July 21st

Session 1, Friday July 21st: 9:00 am - 10:00 am

Fairytale Puppet Time with Gabrielle

Children Only!

Come! Let us join as a group to sing, play a movement game or two, hear a beautiful, enchanting fairy tale, and make some simple puppets inspired by the characters we met in our story. Children will be guided by an experienced Waldorf Teacher to rhythmically engage the head, heart and hands in order to embody the values and lessons that only the art of storytelling can teach us.

Suggested Age Range: 6-10 years old


.Workshop Language: English     Workshop Level: Beginner     Program: Youth Ticket

Session 2, Friday July 21st: 10:30 am - 12:00 pm

Anything Can Be A Puppet by Michelle Finston

In this workshop, participants will learn how to bring ANY object to life from a spool of yarn to a plastic bag. We will use recycled materials to create simple and effective puppet shows. Participants will explore simple manipulation techniques to teach to students as well as techniques that are useful when communicating to a class through puppets.  Every person has a style and way of moving and looking at the world that is unique to them.  Through various exercises in building and movement we will begin to tap into finding confidence in our own style of bringing any inanimate thing to life.

                                           Suggested Age Range: 6-10 years old

             Workshop Language: English     Workshop Level: Beginner     Program: Youth Ticket

Session 2, Friday July 21st: 9:00 am - 12:00 pm (and Beyond)

Make Parade-sized Puppets with Cheryl Capezzuti for the Community Day Parade

Make parade-sized puppets with Cheryl Capezzuti for the Community Day Parade at 2:30 pm on Saturday. Participants will be working in small teams to bring imaginary creatures to life in this hands-on, construction workshop. If you want to see the project from start to finish you need to come for the whole workshop, but drop-in is welcome, if you don't mind helping out a team.

Suggested Age Range: All Ages Welcome

Workshop Language: English     Workshop Level: Beginner   

Programs: Youth Ticket & Community Days

Friday, July 21st, 1:00pm a Community Days Performance

"Santa Got Fired" - Jim "Nappy" Napolitano

Before Santa got the job we are all familiar with, he had many other jobs. In this performance we will learn about all the jobs and troubles Santa encountered in his youth. Presented in five parts, “Santa Got Fired” teaches us how to learn from our mistakes and that you can have your milk ’n’ cookies and eat them too

Bio

Jim Napolitano is a native of Milford, Connecticut, and a graduate of the University of Connecticut's Puppet Arts Program. After completion of his degree, Jim worked with Bits and Pieces Puppet Theater. He performed around the country and around the world, including The National Culture Center in Japan and The National Theater in Taiwan.

Jim has worked as a freelance artist and performer. Jim’s work can be seen on the PBS show, Between The Lions. Other television credits include The Book Of Pooh,The Weinerville Chanukah Special,A Show of Hands and Stick Stickly . Jim has also performed voice over work for “Kirby:right at you”, “Shaman King”, “Pokemon”, “One Piece”, Between the Lions and other prodjects.

For over 30 years jim has performed Live Shadow Theater for family audiences as Nappy's Puppets.Nappy's Puppets is dedicated to presenting quality puppet theater to audiences of all ages. The goal of each performances is to entertain, inspire and educate the audience on the range and scope of puppetry as an art form.

                                       Program Language: English   Availability: Public - 10 and up  Programs: Youth Ticket & Community Days

Friday, July 21st, 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Meet The Artist Hosted by Carole D'Agostino


Carole D'Agostino presents "Meet The Artist," honoring the festival tradition established by Allelu Kurten. An intimate interview session with specially selected artists before a live audience, Carole asks direct questions that always receive the most fascinating responses! Learn how your favorite artists got started, how they like to work, what keeps them motivated, and where they see the future of puppetry. Audience questions will be welcomed.


                                       Program Language: English      Program: Community Days

                 Friday, July 21st, 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Puppets and Autism: A Special Connection

a Panel Discussion hosted by the Jim Henson Foundation

Puppetry has a special ability to connect with neurodivergent audiences and can be used as an effective learning tool and bridge for communication and motivation. An invited panel hosts a lively discussion with Jim Henson Foundation President Cheryl Henson, Foundation Manager and co-artistic director of WonderSpark Puppets Z. Briggs, Center for Puppetry Arts Education Director Aretta Baumgartner, Artistic Director of Drama of Works and creator of "Puppet Club" for neurodiverse puppeteers Gretchen Van Lente, puppeteer of Julia on Sesame Street and Artistic Director of Puppet Pie Stacey Gordon, and puppeteer and puppet-builder Kieran Braun. 

                                Program Language: English      Program: Community Days & Symposium

Friday, July 21st, 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Digitizing Personal Archives I & II with Jeff Swann

Jeff Swann promised his mother that he would document the effort and love she put into her puppetry career. In this workshop he will review the equipment he used and the procedures he developed for digitizing the archive of scripts, correspondence, newspaper clippings, and other ephemera.  This hands on workshop will also offer tips on digitizing legacy audio and video recordings. These workshops are presented by the Puppeteers of America Festival Exhibit 

                                                                                                              

                                                                               Program Language: English      Program: Community Days & Symposium

Friday, July 21st, 4:00 pm

Full-length Film Screening



Selected full length film screenings presented by the Reel Puppetry Film Festival.

Selections will be announced in late spring 2023.


                                        Program Language: TBD     Availability: Public - ages TBD   Programs: Community Days

Friday, July 21st: 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm



SPECIAL RECEPTION

The Jim Henson Foundation presents:

American Puppet Theater Today: The Photography of Richard Termine


Please join us for a reception that will be held on Friday, July 21 from 5pm-7pm in the gallery and piano room in the

Michelle Smith Performing Arts Library


New York-based photographer Richard Termine has documented American Puppet Theater for over 30 years. Termine’s work captures the animated gesture of the puppet in still images. Over 100 images and objects in this exhibition illustrate the dynamic range of Puppet Theater being created by a vibrant community of artists in the New York City area, as well as some of the excellent work presented at National Puppet Festivals across the United States. 

Availability: Public - All Ages   Programs: Community Days & Very Engaging Puppetry

Puppeteers of America Community DAY

Saturday, July 22nd, 9:00am - 12:00pm a Community Days Performance

Buddy The Rat

Over the last two years Buddy the Rat has become a staple of the New York City street performance landscape. Popping up in the most unexpected places, tourists and locals alike are delighted and surprised by his antics: perching on trash cans, chasing giggling bystanders, or dragging a seven-foot long slice of pizza down the subway steps. Now he’ll be joining the 2023 National Puppetry Festival Community Day! Give him a pat on the head or stomp on his tail, he’s just here to make friends!


Instagram: @jonothonlyons TikTok: @jonothonlyons YouTube: @jonothonlyons  Tag him! #buddytherat

(Buddy will be exploring randomly within the posted time frame).

Suggested Age Range: All Ages Welcome

Program Language: English     Programs: Youth Ticket & Community Days

Saturday, July 22nd, 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Panel Discussion with Concord Park Residents

Housing rights activist Morris Milgram developed Concord Park outside of Philadelphia as an interracial community at a time when covenants prohibiting the sale of homes to African Americans and other minority groups were routinely included in deeds. Children of the Wonderland Puppet Theatre puppeteers will discuss their experience growing up in a neighborhood that intentionally sought to fulfill Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s vision of Beloved Community and the role that the Wonderland Puppet Theatre played in unifying neighbors.

                                                                                                              

                                                               Program Language: English      Program: Community Days

ANYTHING CAN BE A PUPPET PLUS!!!! with Michelle Finston

In this workshop participants will explore various collaborative movement exercises and ways in which to build puppets through Manipulation techniques and thatEveryone has a style and way of moving and looking at the world that is unique to them. Participants will learn how to bring ANY object to life from a spool of yarn to a plastic bag. We will use found and recycled materials to create unique, simple, and effective table top pluspuppets.Through various exercises in building and movement we will begin to tap into finding confidence in our own style of bringing any inanimate thing to life. Be prepared to move, make, and create

                             Suggested Age Range: Teen

             Workshop Language: English     Workshop Level: Beginner     Program: Youth Ticket

Saturday July 22nd: 10:45 am - 12:00 pm

Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in Puppetry Arts with Edna M. Bland

An open forum or panel discussion on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Hosted and moderated by Edna Bland, PofA Board Member and Chair of the EDI Committee.

                     Program Language: English     Workshop Level: All Levels      Program: Community Days

Saturday July 22nd: 11:00 am - 1:00 pm

Sam and Friends The Story of Jim Henson's First Television Show

Presentation and Book Signing by Craig Shemin


FREE TICKETS HERE

Craig Shemin, author of Sam and Friends: The Story of Jim Henson’s First Television Show, began his career with a fourteen-year stint at The Jim Henson Company, where he wrote for the TV series Telling Stories with Tomie DePaola, Donna’s Day and The Wubbulous World of Dr. Seuss (WGA nomination). He also wrote Muppets Inside, the award-winning computer game, co-wrote the Webby-nominated web series The Muppets Kitchen, assisted Miss Piggy with her cookbook, In the Kitchen with Miss Piggy and worked on numerous Muppet TV appearances and other projects. His more recent Muppet work includes Carnegie Hall’s Jim Henson’s Musical World and The Jim Henson Retrospectacle In Concert in New Zealand.

Now President of the Jim Henson Legacy, a non-profit organization dedicated to celebrating the work of Jim Henson, and a noted Henson historian, Shemin is the author of The Muppets Character Encyclopedia and he produced and directed the award-winning documentary Behind the Scenes in Frogtown Hollow, about the making of Emmet Otter’s Jug-Band Christmas. He also curates the Henson screening events at Museum of the Moving Image and, in 2022, he produced Disney’s D23 Expo’s There’s Magic in the Air, a special

performance and panel marking the 30th Anniversary of The Muppet Christmas Carol.

Outside of the world of Jim Henson, his television work includes the recent PBS/Amazon series Clifford the Big Red Dog and Nick Jr.’s Abby Hatcher. He created and wrote Disney’s Lou and Lou: Safety Patrol and wrote the Emmy-nominated Tasty Time with ZeFronk, also for Disney. He directed a series of streaming holiday specials featuring Spookley the Square Pumpkin and his writing credits also include Nick Jr.’s Dora and Friends: Into the City, Oobi and Gullah Gullah Island and the Cartoon Network series Courage the Cowardly Dog, He writes and directs the L.O.S. Kids live concert series for New York City’s Little Orchestra Society. His adaptation of Babes in Toyland played Lincoln Center for three holiday seasons and his updated version of Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel made its debut there in 2014. He is married to the delightful Tony-nominated performer Stephanie D’Abruzzo.


www.samandfriendsbook.com

Program Language: English      Program: Community Day & Very Engaging Puppetry


Photo by Jaclyn Nash, National Museum of American History

Saturday July 22nd, 1:00pm a Community Days Performance

"A Slice of Crazy Pie" - Madison j. Cripps

A Slice of Crazy Pie is a unique performance full of interactive song
and pun. Cripps weaves harmonica, vocals and hand carved wooden
marionettes into a sauntering jaunt through the back reaches of his
brain. Fairly endearing, often boisterously emotive, always entertaining.

Madison J. Cripps became a professional puppeteer in 2006 while working on a small farm in the Berkshire Mtns. Supporting his puppetry is a diverse history of fine art, construction, environmentalism and theatre. In 2008, Madison was awarded a grant from the Mass. Cultural Council for the Cripps Walking Theatre Project. He moved to Asheville, NC from 2009 to 2015 and was an active member of the performing arts community. During that time Cripps was awarded an UNIMA citation of excellence in puppetry for his work on Billy the Liar in 2014. Now back in New England, Cripps brings the experiences and influences of his travels where he performs.

Program Language: English   Availability: Public - All Ages   Programs: Youth Ticket & Community Days


Saturday July 22nd: 2:30 pm - 4:00 pm

Puppeteers of America Community Day Puppet Parade

Join us for an exciting pageant of puppets, banners, music, and dancing as we celebrate our love of the puppetry arts. Led by the parade artist Cheryl Capezzuti and her team, all are invited to the join the parade of puppeteers as we travel around the University of Maryland campus. You are welcome to B.Y.O.P (bring your own puppet!). Did you know you can drop in on Friday 7/21 from 1pm-4pm and help build puppets for the parade? Or that there will be a dance party to follow for the littles? Now you do!


About Cheryl Capezzuti

Cheryl Capezzuti has been making giant puppets for more than 25 years after a workshop with Sara Peattie at Penn State in the early 1990’s changed the trajectory of her life. She is best known for the artist-made, people-powered First Night Pittsburgh Parade which features about 300 giant puppets, puppetmobiles, pedicab puppets, dozens of musicians and over 400 volunteers making it happen. She’s been an Artist-in-Residence at the Pittsburgh International Airport where she made puppets to parade through the airport completely out travelers’ discards and she’s been commissioned by the City of Pittsburgh to tell its history using giant puppets for the Bicentennial Parade. She teaches at Falk Lab School at the University of Pittsburgh where her Giant Puppet Dance Club may be the most unexpected student program. Between parades, her puppets are housed at the Braddock Carnegie Free Library, one of Andrew Carnegie’s first libraries, and can be checked out by anyone with a library card for events, celebrations and just for fun. She is joined for this production by her long-time collaborator Kellee Van Aken, a writer, director and Dean of the School of the Visual Arts and Theater at Seton Hill University. Learn more at www.puppetsforpittsburgh.com.                     

                                                              Availability: Public - All Ages   Programs: Community Days & Very Engaging Puppetry

Saturday July 22nd: 4:00 pm - 4:30 pm

Giant Puppet Dance Club

Join the fun dancing along with Giant Puppets made and performed by middle school students from Falk Lab School at the University of Pittsburgh. Especially good for ages 3-8 and the young at heart.

Suggested Age Range: All Ages Welcome

Workshop Language: English      Programs: Youth Ticket & Community Days

AFRAID OF THE POST-FESTIVAL BLUES?

Sunday, July 23rd:  11:00 am - 3:00 pm

NEW- IMAGINATION UNLIMITED: THE JIM HENSON Exhibition at the Maryland Center for History and Culture in Baltimore

A Bus Tour before you travel home...

Following Festival Check-out, interested attendees and members of the public are invited to board a bus to see the Imagination Unlimited: The Jim Henson Exhibition at the Maryland Center for History and Culture in Baltimore. Info on their website can be found here: Upcoming Exhibitions – Maryland Center for History and Culture (mdhistory.org)



Photo: Courtesy of The Jim Henson Company

Schedule

11:00am:  Bus Departs University of Maryland (UofM)

12:00pm - 2:00pm: Tour Exhibit

2:15pm: Bus Departs Museum for UofM 

3:00pm: Estimated Arrival at UofM**

Cost: $15 (+ fees) - The Festival will arrange entry ticket purchase for the group and will contact individuals to collect payment closer to the event.

Already registered? email The Festival team to reserve your spot. New registrations will be able to select this as an "add-on" in the menu and pay the fee. members of the public may register for this event only.

**Please note that the trip between the University and Baltimore is subject to traffic and we cannot guarantee arrival times.

The museum does not have a café but https://mtvernonmarketplace.com/ is located next door.

Members of the public may register for this activity. There will be no housing or further activities produced by the National Puppetry Festival on Sunday 7/23. Those wishing to stay overnight may take advantage of discounted rates with our partner The Hotel at the University of Maryland. Limited rooms are available. Guests may book rooms through the online portal: https://reservations.thehotelumd.com/107316?groupID=3812226 or, with the Central Reservations Desk at 301-277-7777 EXT 7101


Courtesy of The Jim Henson Company. Photo by John E. Barrett.

Puppeteers of America
310 East 38th St, Suite 127
Minneapolis, MN 55409

612-821-2382
office@puppeteers.org