File puptcrit/puptcrit.0909, message 76

Date: Sat, 5 Sep 2009 01:14:40 -0400
Subject: Re: [Puptcrit] Who is this?

Mack divides his time between Wilmington DE and Fort Lauderdale FL
I have had many conversations with Mack.

Here is a brief bio.

*Mack Emmert 1925*

Mack first became interested in theatre and dance at Upper Darby Jr High
School, very near Philadelphia, PA.  He played in summer stock at age 14. He
learned tap dance, acrobatics and jitterbug. Mack performed while serving in
the Navy during World War II. Bob (Andre Vern) Longfield (1911-2000) spotted
Mack while performing in Texas in 1945 and thought he would make a good
puppeteer. Bob taught Mack about puppetry and the two performed in the Navy
and then continued the act on their own after the war in 1946 appearing in
theatres and nightclubs. Back in the Philadelphia area in 1948 Mack did TV
work for Marjorie Kellberg (1892-1974).

In 1949 Mack graduated from Penn State, and then studied at Harvard Business
School and the University of Wales. Mack said, =93My puppeteering paid for my
education at all 3 schools.=94 While in the U.K. at the University of Wales
Mack performed for war orphans. He also saw his name on a marquee of a
London West End theatre.

His travels took him to South Africa where he performed for Zulu royalty.
Mack Emmert and Bob Longfield re-united for a performance at a PofA festival
in Minneapolis in 1953.

Mack settled in Wilmington, Delaware. While perusing a business career Mack
still occasionally performed with his marionettes on cruise ships. At
national puppetry festivals Mack was frequent volunteer and performer at

Catherine Westfield (1911-1992) and Herb Scheffel were friends and mentors.

Mack especially likes the work of Bob Baker, the Yale Puppeteers, Walton and
O'Rourke and Frank Paris. While following a career in business Mack always
continued to perform with marionettes. He frequently performed on cruise
ships. At national puppetry festivals Mack was a frequent volunteer and
performer at potpouri

As the health crisis with HIV began in the 1980's Mack volunteered to help
patients and entertain them. His volunteer work was honored in 1999 with
AARP's prestigious Heritage Award. After nearly 60 years of performing with
puppets Mack maintains his zest and enthusiasm for pleasing an audience.

His puppets included trick marionettes such as a sailor (or clown) with a
balloon, a breakaway skeleton, and a roller skating bear.  His interest in
dance was reflected in his African dancer marionette his cancan dancer
marionette, and his jitterbug puppet.

On Fri, Sep 4, 2009 at 10:51 PM, <> wrote:

> That is Mack Emmet who just retired at age 84 that figure and several
> others were in the exhibit at this years National Festival in Atlanta. Mack
> is a fascinating man with many wonderful remembrances of his many years in
> show business. He also managed to earn a doctorate degree along the way.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Robert Rogers <>
> To:
> Sent: Fri, Sep 4, 2009 4:27 pm
> Subject: [Puptcrit] Who is this?
> I'm always amazed by the number of puppeteers who used to work in evening
> gowns
> and tuxedos.  Here's a photo of one on ebay.  Can anyone identify him?
> Robert Rogers
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