School of Fine ArtsBallard Institute and Museum of Puppetry
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The University of Connecticut (UConn) is a public research university in the U.S. state of Connecticut. UConn was founded in 1881 and is a Land Grant and Sea Grant college & member of the Space Grant Consortium. The university serves more than 30,000 students on its six campuses, including more than 8,000 graduate students in multiple programs.

Free Tours at the Ballard Institute for CT Open House Day on 6/8!

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The Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry will participate in the 15th Annual Connecticut Open House Day – a unified celebration of the state’s fascinating world of art, history, and tourism – on June 8, 2019. During this one-day event, the Ballard Institute will offer free tours at 1 and 3 p.m. of its current exhibitions: The World of Puppetry: From the Collections of the Ballard Institute and It’s Always Pandemonium: The Puppets of Bart Roccoberton, which features over 90 works by UConn Puppet Arts Program Director Bart. P. Roccoberton, Jr.

On Connecticut Open House Day, more than 200 other organizations and attractions throughout the state will open their doors and offer special incentives to visitors. This exciting statewide event, sponsored by the Connecticut Office of Tourism (COT), is designed to broaden awareness among residents of Connecticut’s exceptional cultural and tourism assets and encourage them to become ambassadors who share their newfound discoveries with visiting family and friends.

The Ballard Institute’s free tours at 1 and 3 p.m. will feature these current exhibitions:

  • The World of Puppetry: From the Collections of the Ballard Institute showcases an array of different puppets carefully selected from the Ballard Institute collections to reflect the amazing richness of global puppet traditions and contemporary innovations in puppetry. The exhibition includes a variety of hand puppets, marionettes, rod puppets, toy theaters, and shadow figures from Asia, Africa, Europe, and the Americas, with particular attention to twentieth-century United States puppetry.
  • It’s Always Pandemonium celebrates the ongoing puppetry career of Bart. P. Roccoberton, Jr., from his touring days performing with his troupe the Pandemonium Puppet Company; to his founding of the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center’s Institute of Professional Puppetry Arts; and now, to his work building puppets and puppeteers as Director of the UConn Puppet Arts Program. It’s Always Pandemonium, curated by UConn Puppet Arts MFA candidate Matt Sorensen, features over 60 puppets, masterfully designed and crafted by Bart Roccoberton, his Pandemonium collaborators, and countless UConn Puppet Arts students under his guidance.

To qualify for any Open House Day special, at least one person in each visiting group must show a valid Connecticut driver’s license. Connecticut Open House Day also includes opportunities to become a Connecticut Ambassador as part of COT’s Ambassador Program, an ongoing initiative designed to cultivate pride among residents in the state’s many diverse historic, arts, tourism and entertainment treasures. For more information about Connecticut Open House Day, visit www.CTvisit.com or call 1-888-CTvisit.

The Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry is open Tuesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Visitors can park in the Storrs Center Garage located at 33 Royce Circle. Parking in the Storrs Center Garage is free for the first two hours and $1 per hour thereafter, with a daily maximum charge of $8. For more information about museum exhibitions or programming, visit bimp.uconn.edu or call 860-486-8580. If you require an accommodation to participate in this event, please contact Ballard Institute staff at 860-486-8580 or bimp@uconn.edu by June 3.

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