2018 Spring Puppet Forum Series

For its 2018 Spring Puppet Forum Series, the Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry at the University of Connecticut will host four free scintillating discussions with puppeteers, historians, directors, and builders on Thursday evenings at 7 p.m. in Feb. through April at in the Ballard Institute Theater, located at 1 Royce Circle in Storrs Center. These forums will illuminate new perspectives on the creation, history, aesthetics, and performance of puppetry today. The Spring Puppet Forum schedule will include the following talks:

Feb. 8: Nurturing New Work for Puppet Theater: the Jim Henson Foundation with Cheryl Henson, Richard Termine, Z Briggs, and Leslee Asch

Join Jim Henson Foundation President Cheryl Henson, board members Leslee Asch and Richard Termine (a Puppet Arts Program alumnus), and foundation manager Z Briggs (also a Puppet Arts alumna) in a discussion about the foundation’s dynamic methods of supporting innovative new puppet productions across the United States.

 March 1: American Puppet Modernism: The Early 20th Century with Steve Abrams, John Bell, and Bart. P. Roccoberton, Jr.

In conjunction with the Ballard Institute’s new American Puppet Modernism exhibition, Puppetry Journal editor Steve Abrams, Puppet Arts Program Director Bart. P. Roccoberton, Jr., and Ballard Institute Director John Bell discuss the fascinating history of early 20th-century puppetry in the U.S., from cross-country touring shows to giant inflatable puppets, avant-garde operas and other ground-breaking innovations.

April 12: Direction and Collaboration: Making Theater with Actors and Puppets with Madeline Sayet and Zach Broome

Exciting young director, writer, performer, and educator Madeline Sayet, together with puppet designer and Puppet Arts graduate student Zachary Broome discuss puppetry and the collaborative process in the making of Connecticut Repertory Theatre’s Spring 2018 production of She Kills Monsters. This forum is co-sponsored by the Connecticut Repertory Theatre.

April 26: Puppets and Film: Paul Spirito’s Ancestral with Paul Spirito

Director, puppeteer, and Puppet Arts technical supervisor Paul Spirito discusses the process and dynamics of his new puppet film Ancestral, shot entirely on UConn’s Depot Campus.

Admission to these events is free (donations greatly appreciated!), and refreshments will be served. Come early, and experience our puppet exhibitions, as well as the video resources in our library nook. Forums will be broadcast via Facebook Live. Visit bimp.uconn.edu or call 860-486-8580 for more information.