The department of Theater Studies is proud to announce a new project for Spring 2018. Theater Studies faculty designer/puppeteer Professor Torry Bend and award-winning playwright Howard L. Craft will be collaborating on the development of an original puppet show with the working title of DREAMING: Little Nemo In Slumberland revisited. The project will begin with a single source material, Winsor McCay's weekly comic Little Nemo in Slumberland (which ran in the New York Herald from 1905 to 1911) and create a puppet show from that material.
For this original faculty work-in-progress, Bend and Craft will be sharing all aspects of creating new work with the students who enroll in THEATRST 350, the mainstage class. Students will follow Craft in his writing process as they also develop their own scenes for the production. Bend will introduce students to the necessary skills for creating a puppet show including visual storytelling, puppet design, construction and performance. Students also have the option of enrolling for THEATRST 350.2 with stage manager Tracy Francis if they are more interested in the design and technical aspects of building puppets and scenery. (No previous experience required.)
Winsor McCay’s work was incredibly influential for comics and cartoons, but his art also contains outdated, offensive and racially charged imagery. Participants in the project will confront this material and discuss various adaptation techniques for performance today. There will be final performances which will include conversation about confronting the original material, a reading of Craft’s script and performed scenes developed over the semester.
No puppet experience needed. Bend, Craft and Francis welcome people interested in building puppets and those interested in performing. The class will meet Wednesdays, 6:15-8:45p. Performances will be April 13-15 in Sheafer Theater.
Previous work by Torry Bend:
The Paper Hat Game: https://vimeo.com/130324564
If My Feet Have Lost the Ground: https://vimeo.com/117809423