Due to inclement weather, the Ballard Institute will close at 2 p.m. on 1/31.
The Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry and the UConn Puppet Arts Program will present the 2017 UConn Winter Puppet Slam on Friday, February 3, 2017 at 8:00 p.m. in UConn’s Studio Theatre. The UConn Winter Puppet Slam will feature short works by professional puppeteers and performers, including Lone Wolf Tribe, Dana Samborski, Better than Never Theater Company, The Grizzly Boys, and J. R. Uretsky and Feminist Conference, as well as new works for puppet and object theater by students from UConn’s School of Fine Arts.
The 2017 UConn Winter Puppet Slam includes work by an array of renowned Northeast puppet professionals and talented UConn students. From New York City, acclaimed puppeteer Kevin Augustine, who performs as Lone Wolf Tribe, will present Body Concert, a haunting solo piece with exquisitely sculpted foam-rubber puppets influenced by Japanese Butoh dance. UConn alum Dana Samborski will return to Storrs from Nashville, Tennessee to perform his tabletop show The Three Bears. The Better than Never Theater Company—UConn alumnus Joe Therrien and his partner Sam Wilson—will perform The Sirens of Titan, Episode 47: Tralfamadore, a toy theater spectacle based on the writings of Kurt Vonnegut. In addition, as The Grizzly Boys, Therrien and New York City puppeteer Tom Cunningham will present an overhead projector show torn from today’s headlines, The Sad and True Adventures of President Punch. Providence-based performance artist (and UConn Art and Art History alumna) J.R. Uretsky and her art band Feminist Conference (featuring Rachel Blumberg on drums and Emily Dix on cello) will perform Hope Load, an autobiographical performance featuring live music and video projection. In addition, the UConn Winter Puppet Slam will feature new works by UConn Puppet Arts graduate and undergraduate students.
The UConn Winter Puppet Slam is supported by the Puppet Slam Network. The Puppet Slam movement is a nation-wide flowering of short puppet productions for adult audiences, encouraged by the Puppet Slam Network created by Heather Henson and Marsian De Lellis. UConn Puppet Slams have been taking place since 2008, thanks to the generous support of the Network.
The UConn Winter Puppet Slam is free and open to the public; donations are greatly appreciated. The event will take place in the Studio Theatre located at 820 Bolton Rd, Storrs, CT. For directions to the Studio Theatre, visit crt.uconn.edu/directions/. These performances are recommended for mature audiences. For more information, call the Ballard Institute at (860) 486-8580 or email us at email@example.com.
As part of its Spring Puppet Performance Series, the Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry at the University of Connecticut will present Cardboard Explosion! by Puppet Showplace Theater Resident Artist Brad Shur. Performances will take place on Saturday, February 11, 2017 at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. at the Ballard Institute Theater located at 1 Royce Circle in Storrs Center.
Cardboard Explosion! brings five original stories to life using nothing but cardboard and the power of the imagination. With help from the audience, puppeteer Brad Shur transforms simple cardboard shapes into elaborate puppet characters, then brings them to life right before the audience’s eyes. Get ready to outsmart dragons, choose your own superpower, and train adorable animal sidekicks in this fun, energetic, participatory show. The show is 55 minutes long, and recommended for children ages 5 and up. Cardboard Explosion! was developed in Puppet Showplace Theater’s Incubator Program with support from the Jim Henson Foundation, the Bob Jolly Charitable Trust, and the Sakharoff Family Trust.
Brad Shur, a lifelong artist, regards puppetry as a medium that allows him to share his passion for all forms of creativity: sculpting, writing, performing, and more. Brad began performing in puppet shows while he was a student at the Rhode Island School of Design, and went on to become an accomplished puppet builder and teaching artist. Shur has been the Resident Artist at Puppet Showplace Theater since 2009, where he has created four original shows: Dr. Doohickey’s Monster Machine, The Magic Soup and Other Stories, Tall Tales, and Robin Hood. Shur’s newest creation, Cardboard Explosion! brings together puppetry, design, and creative improvisation to energize audiences become art makers themselves!
Ticket Prices: Adults: $12; Members/Seniors $10; Students: $8; Kids: $6 (12 years and under)
Tickets can be purchased in advance at the Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry, by phone at 860.486.8580, or online at http://bimp.ticketleap.com/. A surcharge will be added to any purchases made online. Tickets may also be purchased at the Ballard Institute on the day of performance starting at 10 a.m. There will be open seating and no reservations. For more information about these performances, call 860.486.8580.
Frank Ballard’s Marionette Modernism: Peer Gynt and The Love for Three Oranges will be a striking exposition of Frank Ballard’s life-long passion for the artistic possibilities of string marionettes as it emerged in his spectacular versions of two modernist classics: Ibsen’s Peer Gynt, with music by Edvard Grieg; and Gozzi’s The Love for Three Oranges, set to music by Sergei Prokofiev.
Object, Image, Text: The Bread & Puppet Press will feature an integral element of Bread & Puppet Theater director Peter Schumann’s prodigious artistic output: the production of pamphlets, books, posters, and book-like constructions that have complemented his dynamic Bread & Puppet shows since the 1960s.
Due to inclement weather, the Ballard Institute will be closed on Saturday, January 7. We will resume regular business hours on Sunday, January 8.
The Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry at the University of Connecticut will host its Spring Puppet Performance Series on four Saturdays from February to May 2017, featuring outstanding works for puppet theater by professional puppeteers from across the Northeast and beyond. Each show will be performed twice, at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. All performances will take place at the Ballard Institute Theater located at 1 Royce Circle, Storrs, CT. Productions and dates include:
February 11: Cardboard Explosion! by Brad Shur- Cardboard Explosion! brings five original stories to life using nothing but cardboard and the power of the imagination. With help from the audience, Puppet Showplace Theater Resident Artist Brad Shur transforms simple cardboard shapes into elaborate puppet characters, then brings them to life right before the audience’s eyes.
March 25: Word Play by Good Hearted Entertainment- Word Play uses clowning and puppetry to take audiences on an adventure through the alphabet. Audiences can make friends with vowels, teach tricks to a “C-A-T” and “D-O-G,” and visit a Word Zoo full of surprises. It’s the perfect blend of education and entertainment- a play on words, literally!
April 22: Hansel and Gretel by National Marionette Theatre– In their newest production, National Marionette Theatre brings the most famous of the Grimm Brothers’ stories to life. Featuring exquisitely crafted marionettes, scrolling scenery, and the beautiful music of Engelbert Humperdinck, Hansel and Gretel is sure to delight audiences of all ages!
May 13: The Legend of the Banana Kid by Frogtown Mountain Puppeteers– Little Chucky heads to the Wild West to outwit outlaws in this cowboy adventure! The Legend of the Banana Kid features 20 of Frogtown Mountain Puppeteers’ hand-crafted glove, mouth, and rod puppets, and a slew of flying and twirling Styrofoam bananas.
Ticket Prices: Adults: $12; Members/Seniors $10, Students: $8; Kids: $6 (12 years and under).
Tickets can be purchased at the Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry, by phone at 860.486.8580, or online at http://bimp.ticketleap.com/. A surcharge will be added to any purchases made online. Tickets may also be purchased at the Ballard Institute on the day of performance starting at 10 a.m. There will be open seating and no reservations. For more information about these performances, call 860.486.8580.
All sales are final — there are no refunds.