Archive for February, 2011

Rod Arm Puppetry 101 (Part 3)

In this post, we’ll talk about some of the motions you can make using one rod at a time. There’s a whole host of them, but I’ll cover some of the basic ones. Point Things OutHave the puppet point things out, point in one direction or the other, up to the sky, or down to […]

Rod Arm Puppetry 101 (Part 2)

Beginning puppeteers should focus on mastering the basic skills before worrying about moving the puppet’s arms and hands. The reason is simple: if you have to concentrate on the puppet’s mouth to make sure you are doing it properly, it is easy to forget about the puppet’s arms. I’ve seen many puppet plays where a […]

Rod Arm Puppetry 101

Rod arm (or hand) puppets are designed so that their arms hang naturally and often come with some type of a wrist band and a metal rod. This allows you to move the hands and arms to give the puppet a more lifelike appearance. Arm rods open the door to making your puppet more lifelike, […]

Can You Make Your Puppet Sit?

In one of the plays we used to do, the prophet Samuel sits on a stool while waiting for David to arrive. So the question came up, “How do I make a puppet sit down?” After all, they don’t have legs and the audience doesn’t see the stool. How do you convince the audience that […]

7 Voice Altering Tips for Your Puppet Plays

When performing using a script, it’s a good idea to alter your voice a bit, especially if you’re performing before a group of people who know you. You don’t have to make a huge change, just enough so it sounds different. With the slightly different voice coming out of a puppet most people won’t know […]

How Consistent Are Your Characters?

We have a fairly large collection of plays to choose from, and included in that is a group of plays that use the same characters. The group includes one adult, five children, and a dog, but all the characters don’t appear in every play. When we had a traveling team, it didn’t really matter who […]

3 Tips for Beginning Puppeteers (and a Reminder for the Rest of Us)

In this post, I want to share three important fundamentals that if done properly will help your puppet look more lifelike. When people talk, they drop their lower jaw, so your puppet needs to do the same. To do that, you need to drop your thumb when talking with the puppet. The normal tendency is […]

Puppets Can Kazoo, Can You?

The last post talked about using a kazoo during a recorded play. Since it worked so well, we began to experiment on how else we could use the kazoo. I began to wonder if a live puppet could actually play a kazoo. We have a human arm style dog puppet used for adlibs and decided […]

Can Your Puppet Play a Kazoo?

A number of years ago, we bought a cassette tape with several puppet plays and one of them included two puppets that played kazoos during a song. We kind of ignored the play for quite a while, but then had a program where song fit perfectly, but did it without the kazoos. That didn’t look […]

Is Your Puppet Right or Left Handed?

While your puppets really aren’t right or left handed, your puppeteers are and tend to use their predominant arm every time they use a puppet. Most of the puppeteers on your team are likely right handed. Normally that’s fine but there are a couple of reasons why each puppeteer should develop their weak arm as […]

Should Puppets Get “Saved?”

A couple of times, I’ve watched puppet plays where a puppet prayed to receive Jesus as his Savior which got me to thinking. Should a puppet get saved? My initial thought was no, but decided to look into it more. It is my opinion that a puppet should not get saved during a performance and […]

Did We Forget Something? (Part 2)

The last post talked about creating a master checklist that you can personalize for each performance and create a check list for loading supplies. I used a spreadsheet program and saved the file. Then for each program, I would remove the unneeded items and print it as my checklist. The problem was, once I made […]

Did We Forget Something?

When we first started traveling with our puppets, I’d go through our equipment and pack everything I thought we’d need. It worked great until one day we got to a venue about three and a half hours away from home and discovered we forgot all of our cassette tapes. The majority of our plays for […]