2023 UPCOMING EVENTS
2023 Greater Houston Puppetry Guild Activities
Sunday, March 12, 2 pm Zoom Puppet Show by Ginger Lozar “The Three Billy Goats and the Gruff Brothers” is a Gingery version of the well loved fairy tale. It is told from the point of view of the two troll Gruff Brothers. The 20 minute hand puppet show is humorous and thought-provoking, proving it’s nice to be good neighbors. Ginger Lozar is an Illinois-based puppeteer who has enjoyed sharing her love of puppetry through performances and artist in residency workshops throughout the Midwest and seven countries internationally. To learn more, please go to www.gingerlozar.com or YouTube: Punch and Judy India”.
Sunday, April 23, 2 pm Zoom Presentation by Joann McMillan “A Tour of the Flying Heart Theater Puppet Playhouse” Joann’s 30 x 40 foot, two story playhouse houses puppets of every sort from hand puppets to giant parade puppets that span her 50 year career as a puppeteer. She will be sharing some of her favorite experiences and information about how she makes her puppets. She says, “Some of them will probably come to life for us.” Joann received a BA from University of Delaware and since 1993 has been “Artist in Residence” for the Oklahoma Arts Council. She is an accomplished artist, educator, puppeteer with many professional puppet productions. She presents many historical puppet shows and was recognized by the Oklahoma Museum Association for the best outreach, educational program, “Miss Fay’s Centennial Day” in 2007. More information is available on her website: joannmcmillan.tripod.com or email- email@example.com
January Puppet Guild Meeting Review by Joanne Schroeder
Our Guild member Rikki Shaw performed her ventriloquist routines with her vent dummies Grandpa, a monkey, and one more character. Grandpa has been her long standing character for such a long time that she has had to get him some much needed repairs. Us old ones start falling apart. I should know. Rikki says she only performs for Seniors. I attended one of her puppet shows for Seniors at a Baptist church. And they did so love her routines. A mixture of jokes and music makes the show a winner.
February Puppet Guild Meeting Review by Joanne Schroeder Tommy’s Space Adventure was performed on Zoom by Art Grueneberger Using a Stream Deck with programmable buttons, Art was able to project graphics such as open curtains, closed curtains, a forest, a flying saucer and sound effects. The show was a combination of live puppetry with animations and digital graphics. Tommy and Dr. Lost N. Space were live. As Art was performing the puppets live, he had a camera on himself, so we could see him moving the puppets. What we could not see were his feet using the Stream Deck to project the animations and graphics. Art uses a monitor so he can see the puppets onstage during the performance. In Tommy’s Space Adventure Tommy wants to meet an alien. Dr. Lost N. Space wants to capture an alien and sell it to make money. The Doctor meets an alien in Tommy’s yard, captures it and locks it up in a laboratory. There is a laser on the space ship, and it turns Dr. Lost N. Space into a cat, not by looks, just by the sounds and movements a cat would make. The meowing, hissing Dr. Lost N. Space as a cat is hilarious. Then it turns Dr. Lost N. Space into a dog, and finally a chicken who runs off. The sound effects and movements were so effective for all the characters. After the show Art let us see all the machines and wiring backstage. Then he explained how it was all put together. He also mentioned how difficult it was to learn the process. The hard work he put into the show paid off. Website for Art Grueneberger’s puppet shows: Puppetarts.com
November Puppet Guild Meeting Review
by Joanne Schroeder
Mr. Leo Puppet Show was our feature for the meeting. He started with a presentation of a short puppet piece. Maria is frightened by a monster. It is pink and purple. Finally the monster is caught by her friend Tommy. It turns out that Maria’s cousin is wearing a monster costume to scare Maria. Mr. Leo says he puts together 3 short scenes for a puppet show. He came here from Venezuela, put an add for his puppet shows in a magazine, and the business took off. Plenty of music is used in his puppet shows. I witnessed this at the Pearl Fincher Museum where he was performing a puppet show, and the children were clapping and moving to the music. Mr. Leo’s email address: Sales@3balloons3.com. He also has a van used as a mobile puppet stage that he takes to events in parks and neighborhoods. You can view this on his website.
We were so delighted to learn that Mr. Leo has been the recipient of some of David and Carol Carranza’s puppets. It is so good to know that their puppets belong to and are being used by a puppeteer.
Jean Kuecher was especially happy with this news. She also informed us that Linda Roberts of Illinois is trying to sell her puppet shows. Linda’s email address is: Robertsmarionettes@gmail.com This was a delightful puppet guild meeting, as we met a puppeteer in the Houston area for the first time. There are 7 million people in Greater Houston, so there may be more puppeteers out there that we have not met.
December, 2022 Meeting of the Greater Houston Puppetry Guild
Minutes by Joanne Schroeder
Jean Pirtle and Joanne Schroeder met at a restaurant on Sunday, December 11 at 2 pm. for our monthly puppet guild meeting. We discussed getting a credit card reader so people can charge purchases at our puppetry store during our Houston Puppet Festival, and at other sales events we would hold. We need to research this to find out what is available. People attempted to register for the Houston Puppet Festival on line. We did not have that option on our festival website. We need to have that available in the future. We discussed ways the Greater Houston Puppetry Guild could promote the art of puppetry: Shows, Workshops, Sales, Exhibits. We felt that these activities need to be happening throughout the year at various locations in the greater Houston area. I participated in two events held by the Pearl Fincher Museum where I was allowed to sell puppets here in Spring. I have a banner that I attached to the table reading: Greater Houston Puppetry Guild. Look for opportunities in your area. When you find them, let me know and I can bring puppets for the sale and/or exhibit. Libraries have display cases and look for something to display in them.
Email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Highlights of our POA Regional and Annual Houston Pepper Puppet Festival
Sept. 15, 16 and 17, 2022
Thursday night Dinner and Puppet Slam
Fun performances by members of the Houston Puppetry Guild at Hasta La Pasta Restaurant
Puppeteers of America Regional Pepper Puppet Festival on Friday:
Workshops, Pix Smith’s Puppet Exhibit, the Puppet store and two entertaining puppet shows made up a great day for our puppet enthusiasts and guests. We all had a great time sharing puppet ideas, stories, and experiences. Some of the types of shows and workshops included Shadow Puppetry, Puppet Story Telling, Czech Style Marionette, Strings Variety Show, Puppet Exhibit, Fable, Fairytale, and the Big Bad Wolf!
42nd Annual Houston Puppetry Festival on Saturday:
Make and take workshops kept everyone busy as well as provided time to show and tell. Our group of teachers from West University Methodist School had a great time creating puppets to take back to their classrooms and share with their students. The Puppet Store and Puppet Exhibit were popular with our guests as well as families coming to see the Puppet Shows at the end of the day. We saw many smiles on the faces of the winners of our Raffle prizes. Our puppet shows this year were fantastic on both days. What a great time for everyone! Thank you to all of our staff, performers, and volunteers that made this another successful event for the Greater Houston Puppetry Guild! Some of the activities included Sock Puppets, Grocery Bag Puppet, Box Puppet, Flip Face Puppet, Peter Rabbit Glove, The Bumper Crop, and a special showcase of "Calliope Kate and the Voice of the River".
Thank you from Jean Kuecher to the Participants of the SW Regional Pepper Puppet Festival and the 42nd Annual Houston Puppet Festival on September 16 and 17, 2022
“I want to thank you all for a wonderful and exciting two days. The presenters were all very professional, arriving on time and preparing so well. Everyone was kind, energetic and helpful. You are all very talented and creative. The evaluations were glowing with enthusiasm and admiration for new wisdom.”
“Thank you to everyone who attended for your extraordinary effort for our festival and the art of puppetry! Thank you to Jean Pirtle for taking on the difficult job of Registrar, and doing it so well. Thank you to Joanne Schroeder for working very hard to organize the South West Regional Festival and bringing many items to sell in the store. Thank you to Pix Smith for bringing an amazing Exhibit of beautiful puppets. Thank you to Michael and Lynnette Tello for being store managers and bringing many puppets to sell. Thank you to Greg Ruhe for promoting the Raffle so well and making fun Facebook advertisements for the festival. Thank you to Brian Berlin for hosting our monthly Zoom guild meetings and promoting the festival.”
Jean Kuecher, M.Ed. Puppeteer and Teaching Artist Performing Artist with Young Audiences of Houston Director of the Houston Puppetry Festival www.marionetteplayhouse.com cell 281-799-1398
October Puppet Guild Meeting Review by Joanne Schroeder
Lisa Sturz and puppet partners of Red Herring Puppets in Arizona presented Aesop’s Fables in a table top production for our meeting on Zoom. The puppets moved around the scenery which consisted of a tree, a stone arch and a stone wall. 2 puppeteers behind a table did the manipulation.
The rod puppets were beautifully crafted and portrayed the characters in the following stories: The Fox and the Crow, The Tortoise and the Hare, The Fox and the Stork; The Lion and the Mouse, and the Owl and the Grasshopper. It was intriguing to see all of these fables presented in one puppet show. There was a scissor beak on the crow. All of the puppets had lovely flat feet which they showed off. It was a most delightful puppet show.
Hello Puppet Presenters and Performers and Enthusiasts,
You are invited to attend our Monthly Zoom Guild Meetings of the Houston Puppet Guild. Please email to request the link for the online meeting. If you want clock hour educator credit for the meetings, please ask for a certificate.
You are Invited
Greater Houston Puppetry Guild Meeting
On Zoom (Email Joanne Schroeder for the password before the meeting at email@example.com)
Puppeteers of America 2023 National Puppetry Festival
and Academic Symposium
July 18-22, 2023 at the University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland
More information at www.puppeteers.org/national-puppetry-festival
Earn 1 Texas Education Agency Continuing Professional Education Clock Hours.
The Greater Houston Puppetry Guild, a chartered guild of the Puppeteers of America, Inc., is an Approved Provider for the Texas State Board of Educator Certification.
About the Guild
The Greater Houston Puppetry Guild was formed in August 1977 and Chartered by The Puppeteers of America (the national organization of puppeteers) in 1979. The Guild was first introduced to the public by presenting a performance at the Houston Children's Zoo by its members. This performance was so successful that public demand required the scheduled two performances to become three.
In September, 1979, the Guild further promoted itself by building a tent for its performance booth at the Texas Renaissance Festival. The Guild members performed "Punch and Judy" and other hand puppet shows every hour of the six weekends of the Festival.
The Guild has been a steady presence in the area ever since. We are puppetry enthusiasts of all descriptions and ages: professionals, beginners, teachers, librarians, puppet makers puppet collectors and people who simply enjoy puppets. You are invited to share our interest in puppetry by joining the Greater Houston Puppetry Guild.
PERFORMANCE AND CRAFTSMANSHIP.
Many of the Guild's members are puppet builders and performers. We come together to share our common interest, to learn from one another, to stimulate broader public interest in puppetry, and to raise the standards of the Art of Puppetry. We meet quarterly in the Greater Houston Heights area for dinner, to share our latest creations and shows, and and to conduct general business. We gather a few more times each year for member performances, technique swaps and build workshops.
The Guild is involved in education and in the promotion of the Puppetry Arts. To further these goals, every September the Guild has day workshops for school and church educators and librarians at Cypress Creek Christian Community Center. Professionals can earn 7 Continuing Education Hours while they attend playful, creative workshops on using puppets to promote literacy, building simple puppets for and with students, and teaching students to perform with puppets.
President - Joanne Schroeder
Vice President - Brian Berlin
Secretary - Greg Ruhe
Newsletter - Jean Pirtle
Treasurer/Festival Organizer - Jean Kuecher
Title Image Credit. Artisphere, Creative Common License.