Join the Ballard Institute for our third Summer 2020 Online Puppet Forum Series event on Facebook Live! These forums, hosted by Ballard Institute director and puppet historian John Bell, will consist of discussions with notable scholars and practitioners around the world about the past, present, and future of puppetry and puppetry studies.
On June 25 at 4 p.m. ET, Join Ballard Institute director John Bell for a discussion with Bread and Puppet Theater director Peter Schumann about his current socially-distant performances of Insurrection-Resurrection Services at the theater’s farm in Glover, Vermont, and the challenges of making a puppet theater of “praise and denunciation” in the summer of 2020, a time of pandemic and historic change. “The important thing is the moment,” Schumann says; “how do we treat it? How do we treat other people in this moment? We need to deal with the real reality, not the fake reality.” Bell and Schumann will also discuss Bread and Puppet Theater’s approaches to collaboration, racism, and other aspects of theater making, and Schumann’s inspirations from the German romantic poet Friedrich Hölderlin, and 16th-century Silesian cobbler and mystic philosopher Jakob Böhme.
Peter Schumann is the founder and director of the Bread and Puppet Theater, which has been making “cheap art” and political theater since its inception in New York City in 1963. Now based on a farm in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom, the Bread and Puppet Theater tours locally, nationally, and internationally, and has been one of the most influential theater companies of the 20th and 21st century. Long an inspiration for activist art makers, puppeteers, and bread bakers, Bread and Puppet’s unique approach to community engagement, collective theater making, and modernist avant-garde puppetry inspires hundreds of puppeteers who have worked with the company, and thousands of volunteer performers and audience members.