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Marionette Variety Artisits

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Marionette Variety Artisits

A group for marionette artists who perform the traditional cabaret style variety show

Website: http://www.puppethub.com/group/marionettevarietyartists
Members: 54
Latest Activity: Feb 24, 2013

Discussion Forum

Library themes

Started by David C. Herzog. Last reply by David C. Herzog Oct 6, 2011. 5 Replies

Shoulder/Hip Joints on "Soft" Marionettes?

Started by Marc Dunworth. Last reply by Marc Dunworth Feb 7, 2011. 7 Replies

Running time of performances

Started by David C. Herzog. Last reply by Harris Deutsch Dec 30, 2010. 11 Replies

Comment Wall

Comment by David C. Herzog on May 12, 2009 at 9:32am
Well here's an experience I thought I'd never have. Last week I leased a couple of marionettes to a Columbian College student here in Chicago for a short film titled The Magic Hour. The puppets were a male singer and my old stripper marionette that I bet I haven't used in 20 years. The location for the film was a real stripper club here in Chicago and a high rise apartment. The strip club was very posh and very expensive judging by the dinner menue, as well as the "dessert" menue. It was full of high tech lighting equipment and very expensive video monitors. The stage had the pole that the strippers use in their routines [those things are not stationary who knew]. The manager was very nice, and explained that the club had been used in several feature films and TV shows, in fact Oprah's production company had filmed a scene for a TV movie the day before. When it came time to shoot the scene with the Stripper on the stage, they fired up all the lights and fog machine and she did her pole dance. We also filmed a scene with the boy marionette swaggering into the bar and ordering a puppet sized beer from a human baretender. I don't know how the film will come out. It was shot very quickly with only a maximum of three takes per shot. These were after all students on a very tight budget. I will post some stills from the film when I get them.I just hope the director gets a good grade on the film. The crew were all students, and I have to say they took the task very seriously and worked very efficiently. It was shot in both 16 millimeter and high def digital format. The crew consisted of the director, 2 camera men , the lighting designer, the script and prop person, and the continuity person. All very nice young people who were abviously very serious about their studies. It was nice to finaly get some use out of the stripper puppet. She's a good old gal. The manager of the club thought she was really cool, and wished that his " girls" were as easy to work with.
Comment by David C. Herzog on May 12, 2009 at 9:36am
PS I just posted and old pictue of the stipper from the film.
Comment by Vixie on May 12, 2009 at 10:26am
I was wondering, I heard you have some nice rabbit marionettes. Any chance you could post some pics?
Comment by David C. Herzog on May 12, 2009 at 11:12am
Hi Vixie, I have just posted a couple of snaps of my Bernard Bunny Puppet
Comment by Vixie on May 12, 2009 at 3:52pm
Thanks for posting those, looks cute. I am wondering, who does marionette building for others? I have an idea or two, but honestly don't know who to ask, or even what they cost. Can anyone fill me in a bit on more info?
Comment by David C. Herzog on May 12, 2009 at 5:33pm
If you log onto www.puppeteers.org there is a listing on the website of the puppeteers of America of people who will build for others. From what I can see of your marionette fox you shopuld really keep going and try building some more marionettes of your own. You are obviously talented, and I think you would really get a kick out of building for yourself. iIstill learn from every marionette I build.
Comment by Vixie on May 12, 2009 at 6:10pm
I actually didn't do that much work on it, a friend did the bulk of it. He basically followed what I had in mind, and I had an idea how to string it to make it work. Maybe working as a team we might be able to come up with more, I can certainly talk to him about it.
Comment by Phillip Huber on May 27, 2009 at 9:39am
I would like to hear what each person uses as their principle inspiration for creating a new variety act and why. What makes a good act?
Comment by David C. Herzog on May 27, 2009 at 11:16am
As you know, inspiration comes from many sources. I like it best when I find a piece of music that inspires me to create a new character. Since music will often inspire the movement of the puppet I find this is important in building a variety marionette. Another source of inspiration is seeing something that suggest a character. For example, a few years ago I was out with friends in Puerta Vallarta. In the restaurant we were in there were various character dolls displayed. The one above our table was Eartha Kitt is a skin tight Leopard jumpsuite, I thought to my self HMMM Ertha Kitty for the Furry Follies show, that might be fun. Now I need to come up with what she might do in the show. This proccess will be helped of course by listening to Ertha Kitt recordings. The market I play which as you know is mostly very young children will to some degree dictate that decision. Another act I have been wanting to build for years is Carmen Miranda. The inspiration for that of course goes to the late great Frank Paris and his extrodinary Carmen Miranda marionette. I think I finally might be to the point where my design and building skills might be up to the task. The idea was reborn last week when watching a Carmen Miranda movie on TCM. It is her face that one needs to capture as well as the movements. When you study the character behind the face you see where her wonderful smile came from. I am sure I would not be the only puppeteer to have an Ertha Kitty Puppet,[ come to think of it wasn't there an Ertha Kitty Puppet in the show we saw at the Bob Baker theater] as I"m sure there are other Carmen Miranda puppets out there besides Frank Paris's My thought for the Camen Miranda puppet is to add it to my Pirate show for the 2010 season at Navy Pier. I find that latin numbers go over very well at the Pier and I am tired of Livin la Vida Loca with my Ricky Martin Puppet who is not in the Pirate show, but I am getting many requests from repeat clients to put the number back in the show. While not part of inspirtion sometimes our market dictates to us as well. Of course finding the right Carmen Miranda recording will be very important in developing the puppet and the movements.
Comment by David C. Herzog on May 31, 2009 at 5:56pm
Hey jan welcome to the group

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