File puptcrit/puptcrit.0606, message 30


To: puptcrit-AT-lists.driftline.org
Date: Fri, 02 Jun 2006 02:14:17 GMT
Subject: [Puptcrit] Topo Gigio/Poppinfresh


Both worked as smaller versions of Bunraku technique--that is, the ones under discussion, since the original Poppinfresh was a stop-motion figure animated on film one frame at a time, like puppetoons, claymation, Gumby, etc.

With Poppinfresh on Mark Wilson's "Pilsbury Magic Circus" the heads were interchangeable so one could move the eyes left & right, another head's eyes moved up & down. The mouth activated by a clothespin (the minisnapdragon kind) poked thru from the back.) If he was photographed from behind, a different body was provided with all controls attached at the front. This live action-Poppin'fresh kept the TV crew laughing between takes until 11 pm (a long day's shoot)--and one commercial was also shot & broadcast on the program with the live-action figure. Martha Armstrong-Hand sculpted the head & body for Rene. She had also worked earlier at Bob Baker's shop, and sculpted many Barbies for Mattel (where she knew puppeteer Michael O'Rourke of LILI fame). Later, in Cambria, Martha created BEAUTIFUL bisque dolls in limited editions, the first being modelled after a new grandchild. She knew Jerry Juhl in Cambria before he moved away.

Rene will confirm she was a great talent. She knew many puppeteers in the Los Angeles area, including Blanding Sloan.

Kurt Hunter is correct that Topo ("The Italian Mouse") has a U.S. Patent. There are a number of Patent Depositories at certain Public Libraries, including Los Angeles.

ALAN COOK


-----Original Message-----
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Sent: Thu, 1 Jun 2006 12:57:52 -0700
To: puptcrit-AT-lists.driftline.org
Subject: puptcrit Digest, Vol 20, Issue 2

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Today's Topics:

   1. Re: Topo Gigio pupppeteers (Angusson-AT-aol.com)
   2. Re: Magnetic Stage for a  puppet show? (Mathieu Ren?)
   3. Topo puppet (Susan Kinney)
   4. Re: Topo Gigio (Andrew)
   5. Re: Topo Gigio pupppeteers (huntermarionettes-AT-earthlink.net)
   6. Re: Magnetic Stage for a  puppet show? (Kevin Pittman)


----------------------------------------------------------------------

Message: 1
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2006 14:58:38 EDT
From: Angusson-AT-aol.com
Subject: Re: [Puptcrit] Topo Gigio pupppeteers
To: puptcrit-AT-lists.driftline.org
Message-ID: <3db.3e96fda.31b092de-AT-aol.com>

HI Steve, et al:

I remember Topo Gigio as a kid on TV.   Totally appealing personality and 
full of charm.

It's been a while but I'm thinking he never turned completely around. (Back 
to audience.) Therefore, I'd speculate that he's a rod puppet 'combo' of sorts.
The size of the puppet and the precise leg movement give me to also speculate 
that perhaps the legs were operated much like a finger puppet. That is to 
say, one of the operators fingers were the puppets legs, with the body attached 
to the back of the hand.
If you look closely, either a rod or part of an operators hand (for Topo's 
hand) is briefly visible as TG turns away from ED. 

Just a thought.

Fred T.

> Does anyone know how many puppeteers operated
> Topo Gigio?? Here's a link to the video.? A
> client wants a similarly operated puppet....here's a video clip....
> 
> http://www.sofaentertainment.com/sullivan-presents-topo-gigio-friends-p-116.h
> tml
> 
> 



------------------------------

Message: 2
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2006 15:11:31 -0400
From: Mathieu Ren? <creaturiste-AT-magma.ca>
Subject: Re: [Puptcrit] Magnetic Stage for a  puppet show?
To: <puptcrit-AT-lists.driftline.org>
Message-ID: <007801c685af$32105520$1534f3c7-AT-critter1>
	reply-type=original

Thanks a lot Kevin. I'd love to see that puppet.
Is she on your website?

Mathieu Ren? Cr?aturiste
Marionnettes, Masques, Etcetera...
Puppets, Masks, Etcetera...
www.creaturiste.com
creaturiste-AT-magma.ca
(514) 274-8027 



------------------------------

Message: 3
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2006 15:13:59 -0400
From: "Susan Kinney" <susankinney-AT-puppet.org>
Subject: [Puptcrit] Topo puppet
To: <puptcrit-AT-lists.driftline.org>
Message-ID: <093E535814559645B57206DDAA17CE9F755E06-AT-exc-svr1-cfp>

Several years ago we had an exhibit of Rene and his Artists.  One of the
puppets was the 'Poppin Fresh' dough boy that, if I recall correctly,
Rene said was operated like Topo.   It was used in 'Mark Wilson's Magic
Circus' circa 1970.   It 'stood' on Mark's shoulder and they bantered
between acts...a 'live' commercial.
So you may want to get in touch with Rene and ask him how it was done.
 
Susan Kinney


 


------------------------------

Message: 4
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2006 14:37:16 -0500
From: Andrew <puppetvision-AT-gmail.com>
Subject: Re: [Puptcrit] Topo Gigio
To: puptcrit-AT-lists.driftline.org
Message-ID:
	<30657e0d0606011237n538dec80h31fb0031c7e2ea20-AT-mail.gmail.com>

>From all the information I've collected Topo Gigio was performed by
anywhere from 2-4 puppeteers depending on what was needed, but three
was most common. It's possible that seven puppeteers were sometimes
involved, but I suspect the confusion over that stems from skits that
involved two or more puppets which was not uncommon.

I used to do dozens of these types of puppets and it was almost always
three puppeteers - one for the head/body, one for the arms and one for
the legs & feet.

- Andrew

> ------------------------------
>
> Message: 5
> Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2006 7:40:06 -0400
> From: <gkoepke-AT-bellsouth.net>
> Subject: Re: [Puptcrit] Topo Gigio pupppeteers
> To: <puptcrit-AT-lists.driftline.org>
> Message-ID:
>         <20060601114006.PHOG211.ibm64aec.bellsouth.net-AT-mail.bellsouth.net>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1
>
> Steve,
>
> Someone on another list said it was three puppeteers... I have read elsewhere that it was seven!
>
> Back in high school Steve Whitmire made an Elvis puppet that was about two and a a half feet tall that used black art and 3 puppeteers.  One puppeteer worked the head and left arm, second puppeteer worked the right arm and hips, and the third worked both feet.  It was a tight fit on the stage, but the performance looked spectacular!
>
> Gary Koepke
> Snellville, GA
>
> >
> > From: Steve Axtell <steve-AT-axtell.com>
> > Date: 2006/06/01 Thu AM 06:09:03 EDT
> > To: puptcrit-driftline.org-AT-lists.driftline.org
> > Subject: [Puptcrit] Topo Gigio pupppeteers
> >
> > Does anyone know how many puppeteers operated
> > Topo Gigio?  Here's a link to the video.  A
> > client wants a similarly operated puppet....here's a video clip....
> >
> > http://www.sofaentertainment.com/sullivan-presents-topo-gigio-friends-p-116.html
> >
> >
> >
> > Steve Axtell
> > Axtell Expressions, Inc.
> > ****************************************


------------------------------

Message: 5
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2006 14:51:13 -0500 (GMT-05:00)
From: huntermarionettes-AT-earthlink.net
Subject: Re: [Puptcrit] Topo Gigio pupppeteers
To: puptcrit-AT-lists.driftline.org
Message-ID:
	<14368553.1149191473741.JavaMail.root-AT-elwamui-huard.atl.sa.earthlink.net>
	


The Topo Gigio puppet was actually patented in the U.S.  I have a copy of the patent somewhere.  It includes a very precise description of all the mechanics.  I'll try to track that down tonight.  I'll post the patent number (if I can find it).  With the patent number, you can download PDFs of any patent from the US Patent Office website.

Kurt
 

-----Original Message-----
>From: Angusson-AT-aol.com
>Sent: Jun 1, 2006 1:58 PM
>To: puptcrit-AT-lists.driftline.org
>Subject: Re: [Puptcrit] Topo Gigio pupppeteers
>
>HI Steve, et al:
>
>I remember Topo Gigio as a kid on TV.   Totally appealing personality and 
>full of charm.
>
>It's been a while but I'm thinking he never turned completely around. (Back 
>to audience.) Therefore, I'd speculate that he's a rod puppet 'combo' of sorts.
>The size of the puppet and the precise leg movement give me to also speculate 
>that perhaps the legs were operated much like a finger puppet. That is to 
>say, one of the operators fingers were the puppets legs, with the body attached 
>to the back of the hand.
>If you look closely, either a rod or part of an operators hand (for Topo's 
>hand) is briefly visible as TG turns away from ED. 
>
>Just a thought.
>
>Fred T.
>
>> Does anyone know how many puppeteers operated
>> Topo Gigio?? Here's a link to the video.? A
>> client wants a similarly operated puppet....here's a video clip....
>> 
>> http://www.sofaentertainment.com/sullivan-presents-topo-gigio-friends-p-116.h
>> tml
>> 
>> 
>
>_______________________________________________
>List address: puptcrit-AT-lists.driftline.org
>Admin interface: http://lists.driftline.org/listinfo.cgi/puptcrit-driftline.org
>Archives: http://www.driftline.org



------------------------------

Message: 6
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2006 15:56:24 -0400
From: Kevin Pittman <klp-AT-moonshade.oit.gatech.edu>
Subject: Re: [Puptcrit] Magnetic Stage for a  puppet show?
To: puptcrit-AT-lists.driftline.org
Message-ID: <20060601195624.GA26119-AT-moonshade.oit.gatech.edu>

On Thu, Jun 01, 2006 at 03:11:31PM -0400, Mathieu Ren wrote:
> Thanks a lot Kevin. I'd love to see that puppet.
> Is she on your website?

http://www.forestpuppets.com/puppets/bb/

She's also featured on the home page and on the 'Shows and Workshops' 
page.  Bear in mind that she is now the oldest of the puppets that I 
regularly use in performances (she turns three years old this month), 
so her style is a little simplistic compared to my more recent 
creations.  Even so, I find that she still has an amazing amount of 
life in her, and I hope to keep using her for many years to come.

Kevin

----------------------------------------------------------------
Kevin Pittman    info-AT-forestpuppets.com    www.forestpuppets.com         
                     
Professional puppeteer and costume character performer
Specializing in fun, fairy tale style puppet shows, featuring
Personally designed, lovable and lifelike animal characters.


------------------------------

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