struan robertson

perhaps puppets???? by Sarah Deller

Today we had our first puppetry workshop with Jim Morrow and Struan Robertson from Mermaid Theatre and it was amazing.

I didn't really know anything about puppets. I still don't, but I knew even less three hours ago. I made some marionettes in high school and that was a lot of fun, but that was pretty much the extent of my experience and knowledge. But I was on board from the beginning, when Jim spoke about puppets in a really intriguing way. He talked about "objects moving through space" and there was something really - clean, almost; pure; essential - in that phrase that impacted me. 

Working with the puppets today was everything I could have wanted. We were in groups of five, manipulating "doughboy" puppets, which are approximately 5 feet tall. We had to get the puppet to walk across the room and perform various simple actions. It was a huge challenge, it was detailed work, it required collaboration and a lot of thinking. It was necessary to plunge in, but also to constantly observe and consider and experiment. And it was so imperfect! It was amazing to work on a sequence again, and again, and again, and improve every time (or not!), and know that there was still so much room for improvement. Really, it was the most fantastic, thrilling experience and I want to be doing it again right now.