Puppet Centre - *promoting and celebrating the art of puppetry*
Established in 1974 as a trust and registered charity, Puppet Centre is the national development agency for puppetry and focuses on contemporary performance practice, encouraging innovation, whilst also respecting and preserving the heritage of the art form.
Puppet Centre’s strategic role incorporates the use of puppetry in outdoor arts, carnival, dance, opera, screen animation, and theatre sectors. Anticipating and responding to artistic developments and changes in audience engagement, the organisation’s long-term role has taken a range of strategic routes over its 40 year history.
The Wrong Crowd’s HAG, 2013. Photography: Richard Davenport.
Recent Puppet Centre work includes:
Co-ordinating the “Working Together to Strengthen Puppetry” period of consultation and successful bid to Arts Council England to continue the programme as co-ordinators of the Puppetry Development Consortium (2014)
Residency programmes to support emerging artists Grist to the Mill and No Nonsense Theatre at Z-arts in Manchester and The Nuffield, Southampton (2013);
Puppetry in Opera symposium in collaboration with Trinity Laban Conservatoire, The Barbican and Royal Central School of Speech and Drama (2012);
Big Ideas Puppetry/Street Arts symposium delivered with ISAN and University of Winchester (2010);
Bursaries for travel and training. Previous bursary holders include Mervyn Millar whose trip to Handspring in South Africa was instrumental in creating War Horse. Recent recipients including Hannah Mulder, The Wrong Crowd (2012);
A comprehensive programme of skills training workshops;
Animations Online - Puppet Centre’s e-magazine offering discussion, debate, reviews and news, and Puppet Centre’s monthly e-newsletter;
Mentoring for puppetry artists and advice to non-puppeteers.
The Animals and Children took to the Streets by 1927, photograph: Nick Flintoff
Puppet Centre is an Associate Company resident at BAC. Following the fire in April 2015 and the on-going renovations to the building, we have been offered shared desk space whilst offices are being found for all the residents. In the meantime, if you can’t find what you’re looking for on the website feel free to give us a call: 020 7228 5335 to speak to one of our lovely volunteers. You can also contact us via our e-mail and social media channels, including Facebook, Twitter and our monthly newsletter. We will get back to you as soon as we possibly can.
At Puppet Centre, we are determined to continue our work in developing, connecting and advocating for the art form of puppetry in England. We are delighted to confirm that we were recently appointed to co-ordinate the work of the newly established Puppetry Development Consortium and we are looking forward to this exciting new chapter in our history.
We are continuing to grow and develop Animations Online and we are planning a fundraising campaign to expand its activity and impact in 2017. But in the mean time if you would like to get involved we’re looking for articles to post on Animations, provocative questions to share and respond to and ways to implement the future of puppetry in the UK. Email us if you’ve got a fully formed concept or just an idea… contact firstname.lastname@example.org
War Horse at the New London Theatre, photograph: Simon Annand