I was commissioned by a high school’s theater department to make several puppets for an upcoming production; I’ve worked with them before so I jumped at the chance. One of the puppets is an aging, sad-eyed dog, life size, mixed breed,brown with white patches. Her eyelids are still pinned on here, but I think she is looking pretty good.:)
She is indeed life size and is a bit hard to wrangle around to work on. But who could resist that sweet face?
The production Mr. Ooba’s TEAM is an anti-bullying play conceived by my friend Jordan Schwartz and being built and eventually performed by Puppatoons, having been portrayed in various installations by Jordan’s pet project, The Children’s Bilingual Theatre. Recently we were awarded at the Neighborhood Excellence Initiative Event given by Bank of America. Miss Schwartz was at Bryn Mawr in the middle of exams and could not attend the awards dinner, so I and Jacko, one of the characters from the show, attended and accepted the award check in her place.:)
Jordan Schwartz is one heck of an achiever. At 10 in 2003, she founded The Children’s Bilingual Theater. Jordan started with raising $3,000 in donations and encouraging schools to host the shows. CBT not only brought students together, but brought community volunteers to help make the shows a reality. Jordan’s project explores Hispanic language, culture and history and engages the diversity of our community. She has produced 4 bilingual musicals and 4 storytelling and literacy events leading 200 volunteers.
At age 11, Jordan became a disability rights advocate. In 2008 in an unprecedented move in selecting a 14 year old, the Governor’s Council on Developmental Disabilities Organizing Institute chose Jordan as one of 5 participants trained in organizing skills to return to their communities to promote systems change around issues that affect people with disabilities. Jordan wrote a bilingual play.
Mr. Ooba’s TEAM is an anti-bullying puppet show produced by Puppatoons & The Childern’s Bilingual Theater . The show was written by Jordan Schwartz. This production addresses the issues of bullying of developmentally disabled & medically fragile children & diversity in the classroom. Mr. Ooba is an owl, presiding over a class of forest animal children. When one of the kids gets out of hand bullying some of the others about having a disability or nonconformity due to illness, Mr. Ooba steps in to warn the children of the harm of “just making fun”, and to help the kids understand the value of working together.
CBT is a 501c(3) non-profit corp. Sponsorships are available & are tax deductible. For information contact: 678-485-1986
Well, dear readers, I have neglected you somewhat lately..I have been running around like an idiot trying to get my latest show completed. So,I will share the characters from this show, “Jimmie Kate’s Hoedown of Friendship and Love”, with you.:)
First, Jimmie Kate herself. She’s a spunky little palomino horse who considers me part of her Trained Human Show. 😄
Today I sat and scribbled and glued and worked and figured and sculpted and destroyed, trying to make the puppets I envisioned in my head for The Little Man Show. I really want to do a webshow with very small puppets that are either finger puppets or rod puppets or something else cute and small. I want to make the little sets and props that go with them, too. Nothing I tried today was working, and other things I wanted to try I didn’t have the supplies on hand to do.
Then, I got out a ziploc bag full of white cabinet knobs that I had purchased at a thrift store, and magic began to happen.
Wiggly eyes, a scrap of white fur,a cork and a Sharpie smile produced this little fellow, still nameless.
Wiggle eyes, a wooden bead and a tuft of feathers gave me Felicia Frizzly.
More wiggly eyes, a tiny purple pompom and a giant light blue pompom produced Emma Powder.
Here’s all of them. Notice that one wears a snappy bottlecap hat, and one has blue hair in the shape of Bozo the Clown’s. I really like them; I think I could quite possibly turn this into a little ghost show. 😀
I do hope I’m not nuts for attempting such a thing.
In the Star Wars universe, a lot of folks like a certain creature. Many fans like the vicious Wampa, the hapless Tauntaun or the scaly Dewback. Me, I like the Bantha...the enormous, hairy, horned Bantha.
I would love to try my hand at a Bantha costume/full body puppet to take to Dragon Con, as a way to demonstrate my puppetry and costuming skills. I would insist on a one-person costume rather than making two people suffer inside it. Plus, I would have more freedom of movement.
(first sketch, showing “bustle”)
I once saw a cow costume in which the person inside wore a huge sort of “bustle” which made up the cow’s rump, with stuffed back legs dangling down below and touching the floor perfectly behind. With a Bantha costume, there would essentially be a curtain of hair and fur reaching down to the ground, somewhat eliminating the cause for making full legs.
I also ended up with about 8 or 9 yards of the perfect fur. How could I pass up doing this now? I wonder if I could go to 501st troops as a baby Bantha,haha! Problem is, I don’t know any Tusken Raiders.:(
The Puppatoons Website has been considerably overhauled, with projects I’m putting on the back burner taken off, a little tidying up and simplifying things. Hope you’ll take a look!