Thursday, April 16, 2015

Center for Puppetry Arts Unveils 2015-16 Performance Season!

I am excited to see the line up this year for the Center for Puppetry Arts.

What do you think?  Looks GREAT!


In the midst of a highly anticipated expansion and renovation project, the Center for Puppetry Arts® announces its 2015-2016 performance season, filled with classic tales, memorable characters, and plenty of puppet fun for the entire family!

The 16-show lineup features a brand new Center-produced show, a few returning favorites, and a number of notable new and returning guest artist engagements.

Highlights of the 2015-2016 Family Series include Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type playing June 9-July 26.  In this brand-new show adapted from the award-winning book by Doreen Cronin with illustrations by Betsy Lewin, barnyard fun will ensue as Farmer Brown encounters cows that type, chickens on strike, ducks that run amuck, and more shenanigans. The Center will also bring back their popular Theatre for the Very Young production The Tortoise, the Hare, & Other Aesop’s Fables, an interactive and cheerful show performed in a circus setting. Atlanta’s favorite holiday tradition also soars back into town, as Rudolph the Red-Nosed ReindeerTM once again lights up the stage during the holiday season!

Top-notch touring productions are set to grace the puppet stage as part of the Family Series. Tears of Joy Theatre returns to the Center with The Reluctant Dragon, the story of a bookish boy, soft-spoken dragon and famous knight banding together to tell a tale of tolerance. Pinocchio!, by local puppeteer Lee Bryan, is a one-man "tour de farce" using found-object puppets to retell the classic story of the famous puppet. In Thistle Theatre’s Brother Coyote and Sister Fox, the quick-witted Sister Fox stays one step ahead of Brother Coyote in this delightful Mexican folktale with English, Spanish and plenty of chickens! In a special one-day-only event, the award-winning and internationally renowned Salzburg Marionette Theatre presents The Sound of Music, which has been hailed “a mesmerizing spectacle” by the New York Times. This hundred-year-old Austrian company brings their world-class artistry to the classic Rogers and Hammerstein musical for this very limited Atlanta engagement.

The Center’s New Directions Series for Adults and Teens continues to prove that puppets aren’t just for kids. After a two-year hiatus, Atlanta’s favorite band of specters The Ghastly Dreadfuls returns from the grave to celebrate Halloween with creepy stories, frightful songs and devilish dances from around the world. With new stories as well as old favorites, this ghostly jamboree haunts the stage this October. The Secret Garden, by Simpich Marionettes of Colorado Springs, CO, uses hand-crafted marionettes to tell the famous story of disagreeable Mary and her transformative discovery. Guaranteed to inspire, surprise, amuse and provoke, Xperimental Puppetry Theatre will once again bring together artists of all disciplines to create bold, original experiments in puppetry for adult audiences!

In addition to its diverse performance schedule, the Center for Puppetry Arts offers many other programs. The Center’s Film Series showcases puppets on the big screen, featuring classic movies, hidden gems and contemporary productions. Two live events are launching as part of this landmark season: Jim Henson Trivia Night(date TBA) will allow patrons to test their knowledge of the famous puppeteer’s work and life, and Valentine’s Night Out at the Center offers a romance-themed guided tour of the new Museum, along with a cash bar and other puppet activities throughout the evening on February 14.  As part of its award-winning educational programming, the Center offers extensive learning opportunities for patrons of all ages, including Puppet Camp for ages 9 through 12 (June 2015), an Explore Puppetry Series of professional development workshops for ages 16 and up, and Distance Learning live, interactive videoconference programs and recorded webinar content that allow school groups and puppet lovers across the globe to experience the fun of the Center at any location.

Set to open in fall 2015, the new Worlds of Puppetry exhibit at Center for Puppetry Arts will house a comprehensive Global Collection as well the world’s largest collection of Jim Henson puppets and other artifacts. These new galleries will be immersive and interactive, allowing guests of all ages to explore puppetry in new ways, challenging preconceptions and giving a new appreciation of the global scope and universal power of the art form. As part of this project, the Center is also protecting and preserving hundreds of international and Henson treasures for future generations to enjoy and understand.

The 2015-2016 Family Series:

My Life as a Fairy Tale: The Ugly Duckling, May 26 – June 7, 2015
By Open Eye Figure Theatre of Minneapolis, MN

Click, Clack, Moo:  Cows That Type, June 9 – July 26, 2015
Based on the book by Doreen Cronin with illustrations by Betsy Lewin
Adapted by Jon Ludwig and Jason Von Hinezmeyer

The Reluctant Dragon, July 28 – August 9, 2015
By Tears of Joy Theatre of Portland, OR

The Tortoise, the Hare, & Other Aesop’s Fables, August 11 – September 20, 2015
Adapted by Michael Haverty

Peter Pan, September 22 – October 25, 2015
Based on the book by J.M. Barrie
Adapted by Michael Haverty

The 3 Little Pigs & More, October 27 – November 8, 2015
By Grey Seal Puppets of Charlotte, NC              

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, November 10 – December 27, 2015
Based on the classic television special
Adapted by Jon Ludwig

Pinocchio!, December 29, 2015 – January 10, 2016
By Lee Bryan, That Puppet Guy

Brother Coyote and Sister Fox, January 13 – 24, 2016
By Thistle Theatre of Seattle, WA

Space!, January 26 – March 10, 2016
Written by Jon Ludwig

The Sound of Music, March 12, 2016—One Day Only!
By Salzburg Marionette Theatre of Salzburg, Austria                                 

Galapagos George, The Little Tortoise That Could, March 11 – April 3, 2016
By Barefoot Puppets of Richmond, VA

Beauty and the Beast, April 5 – May 22, 2016
Adapted by Jon Ludwig

The 2014-2015 Performances for Adults & Teens:

The Ghastly Dreadfuls: Raising Spirits (Ages 18+), October 14 – 31, 2015

By Jon Ludwig and Jason von Hinezmeyer            

The Secret Garden (Ages 10+), February 23 – 28, 2016
By Simpich Marionettes of Colorado Springs, CO

Xperimental Puppetry Theater (XPT) (Ages 18+ ), May 12 – 15, 2016
By Various Artists 


The best way to experience the Center is by becoming a Member. Members receive big discounts on tickets to performances and enjoy benefits like free museum entry, free films and priority seating.  Plus, Members will have early access to the new Worlds of Puppetry Museum, opening fall 2015, before it opens to the public. For more information, visit WWW.PUPPET.ORG or call the membership office at 404-881-5151.


Ticket prices vary for performances and other programs. See prices at WWW.PUPPET.ORG or call 404-873-3391.


Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type used with permission from Pippin Properties, Inc.  Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and all elements from the 1964 television special Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer © and ™ under license to Character Arts, LLC.

The Center for Puppetry Arts is supported in part by: Fulton County Arts Council • City of Atlanta Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs • Georgia Council for the Arts • Zeist Foundation • The Wish Foundation Fund of the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta • PNC •  Aetna Foundation • The Coca-Cola Foundation • Regency Suites Hotel • WSB-TV Family 2 Family Project • YP • For a complete list of the Center’s major supporters, visit

Kermit and friends are getting a new home at the Center for Puppetry Arts! The nation’s largest nonprofit dedicated to the art of puppetry has begun construction on a 7,500 square foot museum expansion. Set to be completed in fall 2015, the museum will feature objects from the Center’s extensive global collection and will display the world’s most comprehensive collection of Jim Henson's contributions to the world of puppetry. The project also includes a major renovation to existing spaces, including a renovated entryway, expanded research library and many other upgrades that will enhance the overall experience for all visitors to the Center. For more details, visit

Center for Puppetry Arts® is a unique cultural treasure – a magical place where children and adults are educated, enlightened, and entertained. Since 1978, the Center has introduced millions of visitors to the wonder and art of puppetry and has touched the lives of many through enchanting performances, curriculum-based workshops, and the hands-on Museum as well as Distance Learning and Outreach programs. Center for Puppetry Arts is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization and is supported in part by contributions from corporations, foundations, government agencies, and individuals. Major funding is provided by the Fulton County Board of Commissioners and the City of Atlanta Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs. These programs are also supported in part by the Georgia Council for the Arts through the appropriations of the Georgia General Assembly. GCA is a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts. The Center is a member of Theatre Communications Group (TCG), the national organization for the American theatre; Theatre for Young Audiences (TYA/USA/ASSITEJ); and International Performing Arts for Youth (IPAY).The Center also serves as headquarters of UNIMA-USA, the American branch of Union Internationale de la Marionnette, the international puppetry organization.

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