The Puppet Showplace Theatre at 32 Station Street is a theatrical institution in Brookline. Most residents with young children have walked through the velvety curtain entrance of the theater itself and sat on its worn, wooden benches waiting with the same youthful anticipation as their children for the show to begin. The theater has inspired the imaginations of many local children and, at the same time, has helped to nurture and support the talents and dreams of local artists.

Since 2012, Puppet Showplaces’ Incubator Program has provided direction and critical funding for burgeoning and established artists and has led to the development of nine new productions for the theater. Many of these artists have gone on to receive national and international acclaim for their work.

One of the most recent productions to arise from this impactful program is “I Spy Butterfly” by local artist Faye Dupras and with music by Max Weigert. Part of the Puppet Theatre’s New Year! New Show! Series, “I Spy Butterfly,” is a colorful and touching story of a little girl named Trudy who befriends a caterpillar named Harold. The audience is taken for a heartwarming ride alongside Trudy who learns how to cope with love and loss as Harold changes from a caterpillar to a chrysalis and then into a butterfly. Max Weigert’s lyrics and soulful voice provide an excellent balance to Faye Dupras’s easily excitable young Trudy. Full of audience interaction and funny lines, “I Spy Butterfly” is as enjoyable, as it is educational.

The New Year! New Shows! Series runs through February 12, 2017, at Puppet Showplace and also includes a retrospective exhibit at the theater where items and information from previous Incubator productions are on display. To learn more about the Series and purchase tickets for future shows, click here.

By Casey Hassenstein