File puptcrit/puptcrit.0811, message 439

Date: Mon, 24 Nov 2008 21:18:12 -0500
Subject: Re: [Puptcrit] National Marionette Theatre

Hello Mark,

Yes I know the setup. I toured with the then Bennington Puppets in  
the mid eighties with Lolly and Cedric (back when they actually lived  
in Bennington, VT). Ah, Yes I remember it well.... being stuck inside  
Fafnir when he caught on fire during a performance of "The  
Ring"(incidentally, I was the voice of Alberich the gnome on the  
recorded soundtrack), The slurping sounds and one abnormally huge  
transforming bat from "Dracula" and watching someone get an electric  
shock from from the badly shielded cables touching the steel frame  
were highlights of my time in the carriage barn in North Bennington.

I think after all the experiences most of us have had we learn from  
others and then try to work "smarter" for ourselves. Although I would  
like to keep the classical look of a full proscenium for our shows I  
don't feel that I could make a stage that would allow the proscenium  
to be tall enough to achieve the look I'm after with the bridge  
configuration we have now. Some of my pet peeves when going to see a  
marionette show is seeing a stage with a squashed in proscenium, to  
see the puppeteer's hands coming into the frame or the shadows of the  
puppeteers hands coming into the frame, and badly executed lighting  
that flattens out the figures. Because I feel so strongly about this,  
it was best just to remove the proscenium  altogether and allow for  
an expanded lighting system. I feel that now we have the best of both  
worlds with this new stage. I might change my mind in a year or two,  
but it's good right now.

All the best,

David J. Syrotiak

On Nov 24, 2008, at 8:32 PM, Puppet People wrote:

> Hello David;
>     I caught your e-mail last night about scaling down your stage and
> operations and I totally agree. With the economy the way it is we  
> have no
> chioce. Both my wife and I used to tour with the Bennington  
> Marionettes
> about (ugh!!!) 18 years ago and they had a similar set up, 3  
> puupeteers 21/2
> hour set up it was brutal.
>     When we started our own company The Puppet People we made sure  
> that
> every thing was compact and light. Our stage stand about 9 to 10 feet
> depending on the show ( if we are doing marionettes or not) We have  
> found
> that about 10 feet seems to works best for most schools and  
> theaters. It was
> wierd we just stumbled on it.
>     Well good luck this season and please let us know if you are  
> going to be
> in the Albany, NY area we would loved to see a show.
> Mark
> The Puppet People
> P.S. We will be at the Middlebury library, in Middlebury CT on   
> Dec. 2nd
> performing The Firebird. Also we will be at the Edmond Town Theater  
> on Dec
> 6th doing Xmas Carol, if you get a chance it would be great to  
> meet  & talk
> shop.
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