Two puppetry productions by Boston-based artists will have their world premiere performances at Puppet Showplace Theatre in January and February 2014.
This is the theatre's second annual series showcasing new work for youth and family audiences. Past productions have gone on to tour across the Northeast to venues such as La Mama ETC's puppet festival in New York City, Boston's Outside the Box Festival, and Maine's Mostly Puppets Festival. Each year the artists receive production support through the theatre's Incubator program.
The 2014 "New Year, New Shows" series runs January 11 – February 16. Weekend performances are at 1:00 and 3:00 pm. Holiday and school vacation performances are at 10:30 am and 1:00 pm. Friday evening performances and receptions are at 7:00 pm on Jan 17 (Robin Hood) and Feb 7 (Red Ball). Tickets are $12 general admission, $8 members. Tickets and more information are available online at puppetshowplace.org, or from the Puppet Showplace Box Office: 617-731-6400 x 101.
ABOUT THE SHOWS
"Robin Hood" by Brad Shur, Puppet Showplace Artist in Residence
January 11 – 26. Press Opening & Reception: Friday January 17 at 7:00 pm.
Get ready to occupy Sherwood in this rollicking retelling of the classic Robin Hood tale. When the new Sheriff of Nottingham starts uprooting villagers' homes as part of a grand castle expansion scheme, the starry-eyed Robin sees an opportunity to save the day and fulfill his dream of becoming a hero. Of course, he'll need a little help from his friends. Join Maid Marion, Little John, and some unexpected puppet characters for this exciting forest adventure. Featuring a cast of beautifully crafted glove puppets and an original score by Paul Watkins.
"The Great Red Ball Rescue" by Faye Dupras, Foreign Landscapes Productions
February 1 – 17. Press Opening & Reception: Friday February 7 at 7:00 pm.
Red alert! A family trip to the beach goes awry when a young boy's favorite red ball gets whisked away by the tides. Can he summon the courage to get it back? Join Jasper, a timid kid with a big imagination, as he sets out on an adventure across the ocean, under the waves, and up into the clouds. Along the way, he meets fantastical fortunetellers, thieving fisherman, and many mysterious creatures of the deep. Will he ever reclaim his favorite red ball from the clutches of the deep? This visually stunning production features multiple styles of puppetry, an original score by Dana Colley, and lots of sea-faring fun!
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Brad Shur is a versatile puppeteer who has created and performed characters made of everything from pixels to papier mache. As the Artist in Residence at Puppet Showplace Theatre he performs regularly and teaches puppetry classes to students of all ages, pre-K to adult. As protégé of master puppeteer Paul Vincent Davis, Shur trained extensively in glove puppetry and currently performs two of Davis' classic shows at venues across New England. "Robin Hood" is Shur's first original glove puppet show. Shur's other original works include "The Carrot Salesman," "Dr. Doohickey and the Monster Machine," "The Yankee Peddler: Stories and Songs from Old New England" and "The Magic Soup and Other Stories," featured at the Puppeteers of America National Festival 2013. Prior to becoming the Artist in Residence at Puppet Showplace, Shur toured the country as a performer with Big Nazo (Rhode Island), Wood & Strings Theatre (Tennessee) and The PuppeTree (Vermont). As a builder Shur has designed and fabricated puppets for American Idol, Dollywood, Avenue Q, and the U.S.S. Constitution Museum. He is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design.
Faye Dupras has designed, directed, and built puppet shows all over the world. An MFA graduate of the UCONN puppet arts department, she founded Foreign Landscapes Productions in 2004 under which she has created several award-winning performances, including "By The Willow" which received an UNIMA-USA citation of excellence, the highest recognition in American puppetry. Recent professional highlights include working for the Canadian Opera Company as a shadow puppeteer on Atom Egoyan's production of Salome (Toronto '13); puppet design and direction for Liars and Believer's critically acclaimed production of Icarus (Boston/NY '13); and co-developing and implementing Humber College's inaugural Puppet Intensive that drew participants from across Canada (Toronto '13). Dupras is pleased to have an ongoing relationship with Underground Railway Theater's as one of their "go to" puppet artists. Critics have described Dupras' work as "spellbinding," "imaginative," and "powerful." This is her first full-length production for young children.
Puppet Showplace Theatreis an award-winning non-profit performing arts organization committed to excellence in puppetry as a theatrical experience that educates, enlightens, and entertains audiences of all ages. Established in 1974, Puppet Showplace is the first and only year-round dedicated puppetry presenter in New England.
Puppet Showplace Theatre is wheelchair accessible and located at 32 Station Street, Brookline Village, MA 02445 opposite the Brookline Village T station on the Green D Line, which is barrier free and accessible to all children and adults.