Puppeteers Cooperative Blog

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The Rights of Spring: The Swarm of Bees

(photo Deborah Beshaw)

Saturday May 13, 1 PM, at The Old Stone House, 336 3rd St., Park Slope, Brooklyn, NY

A participatory giant puppet pageant in which a swarm of bees goes out to look for a new home, and ends up saving the world.

With the Gotham Easy Brass Band.


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Section in the First Night First Day Parade


Hello All,

First Night is fast approaching, and the Puppeteers Cooperative will be doing a section in the Peoples Parade, and is looking for assistance. The parade will leave Copley Square at 6 PM, and go to the Boston Common, with our groups continuing to the Puppet Workshop space near Arlington St. for hot chocolate and light refreshments. It will be over by 7 PM, so that participants can watch the fireworks on the Common, and then go on to whatever you are doing for New Years Eve.

If you are interested in taking part in this lively street extravaganza, there are several possibilities.

Come, be in the parade, bring friends! It will be lining up at 5:30, leaving at 6 PM, and over by 7. Come early to pick the puppets you like.

Be a puppet Captain! Choose a group of puppets, come early to recruit people for the crowd to perform them, (usually an easy sell, and remember that it’s a Saturday this year) and shepherd them through the parade. None of the puppets are complicated.

 Help out during the day! We will be binging the puppets the few blocks to Copley Square in the morning, to start using them to recruit people for the parade from noon on. Come for an hour at a time, maybe, to help move puppets and to lend puppets for people to try out during the day. It’s the fun part!

Our parade stuff will (as of now) consist of:

City Spirits
(6 brightly and abstractly painted slightly larger than human one-person puppets led by a larger long rather than tall 4-person puppet)

Illuminated City
(12? lantern houses in bright colors)

(10-person illuminated inflated snake, with bright swirls of color)

Possible cloud of small white and blue birds

possible dreamers (blue faces)

Pictures available upon request.

For more information, I can be reached  at 617 536-3355 ext. 26.

My day-of cellphone number is: 617 378-5715

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Making a pulley system for the giant mobiles in Emmanuel Church


I used to just get up in the ceiling, then drop a series of lines to a person on the floor, who would tie them onto the mobile pieces, but that has become too unwieldy, with the mobiles having to come up and down, and me wanting to try out new ones…

The new pulley system goes in four lines through gratings in the ceiling of the sanctuary (the red is pew cushions)


at a crossing in a catwalk more or less central. The lines go up through a pulley or two to go above the head on anybody on the crosswalk.


then down again along the side of the catwalk. The height of the ceiling is about 60′; the catwalk is about 80′ long.


At the end of the catwalk, they turn a corner


to go along a slanted ladder, which leads to a trapdoor, where they turn again, and go down.


The open trapdoor, where I spent hours untangling string. I mentioned 60′ high, right?



The view from the ladder.


Don’t worry, I wore safety equipment!


The four main lines are each about 200′ long, with pull-down lines about 100′ long.  It’s the biggest contraption I’ve ever built, and nobody can see it.  Maybe I’ll do some giant marionettes.