Thursday, January 22, 2015

Puppet Festivities for Kids this weekend

The First Biennial Chicago International Puppet Theatre Festival is this weekend.

 While a lot of the stuff is geared for older kids and their adults (or adults only) they do have a fair amount of activity that is suitable for children.  

 Here's some of the Family Friendly Puppet fare going on this weekend (Much of it happening at the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts. on the University of Chicago campus. )

 From 12-5, there will be a plethora of family friendly puppet activity, including a live action cartoon, a puppet zoo with lots of local puppeteers, a photo booth, and drop in workshops where kids can learn to make puppets.  Tickets are $5, Families of 5 or more are just $20.

Also, at the Chicago Children's Theatre, this weekend starts The Selfish Giant, a puppet/music event based on an Oscar Wilde short story.  Produced and created by Festival creator and (Chicago Puppet Juggernaut Blair Thomas & Co)  This show is a revival, and in its last incarnation garnered serious praise.

Read this Trib article for more info about the festival, as well as an interview with festival founder Blair Thomas.

 Every kid is different of course, and what suits my kid might not suit yours.  Make sure to look carefully at the descriptions of the shows on the Chicago Puppet Festival Homepage

Minneapolis-based company In The Heart of the Beast   presents two shows:
 a Tex Avery-tweaked masterpiece CARTOOON  and a visual poem MORTAL CITY  

Cartooon is a a live-action three-dimensional cartoon performed by a cast of fifteen, come to life in front of your very eyes.

Mortal City is more of a mood environmental piece, using music and visual imagery to evoke a city during an ice storm.

I've seen In the Heart of the Beast before (but not these pieces), and their work is always well done.

These shows are later at night, so are probably for older kids or adults. (but Cartooon will be performed in the afternoon as well)

Local company FlipFlap Productions presents a darkly comic tale THE TEMP.  Flipflap are a group of local comedian/performers who are exploring the edges of comedy/puppetry.  I haven't seen their work before, but it looks very interesting. Also for older kids.  Visit their Tumblr for more details.

There's lots of other stuff going on this is just a taste.

For tickets to all shows, visit the  Chicago Puppet Festival Homepage

Happy Puppet Watching!

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