Sarah Lawrence College will host a Puppetry Festival at the college on May 5th and 6th at 6 p.m. in the Workshop Theatre of the Performing Arts Center. The festival will feature performances by the college’s two puppetry classes, Puppet Central Workshop and Advanced Puppetry. Students in both classes study with one of puppetry’s most renowned artists and 2002 Guggenheim Fellow, Dan Hurlin.
The first act consists of three pieces based on great American scandals. The puppets were constructed and the pieces were designed and choreographed by students.
The second act is the Advanced Puppetry class’s interpretation of the surrealist ballet Parade. During the first semester, the students conducted research, created the story board, designed and constructed puppets in preparation for a public presentation of the full length puppet piece for the spring festival. The six students will display their advanced manipulation techniques to bring Parade to life. Parade, originally produced as a collaboration of composer Erik Satie, poet Jean Cocteau, painter Pablo Picasso, and choreographer Leonine Massine is based on the practice of “parades” in Europe, the excerpts of circus performances sent out in order to preview and advertise the circus upon it’s arrival in town.
The puppetry festival at Sarah Lawrence College is unique as well as important; Sarah Lawrence is one of the five schools in the United States that offer Puppetry as a course of study. “For some reason, puppetry in this country has evolved into a ‘kiddy art’, whereas, in other countries, it is very much an adult art form,” Dan Hurlin explains. However, in the last ten years there has been a revival in the art, and Hurlin hopes we will see more puppetry performances come to the foreground.
Hurlin warns that this performance is not a kiddy show. For more information, please call (914) 395-2411.