Atlanta’s Center for Puppetry Arts has already begun its 2017/18 season with the Family Series show Cinderella Della Circus, adapted by artistic director Jon Ludwig and running through July 23.
And before the 39th season ends in May, the Center will present performances for all age groups plus workshops, films, and special exhibits and events. Ticket prices — which come at a discount for members — vary. Details HERE or at 404.873.3391. The Center is at 1404 Spring St. NW in Midtown. Here’s a rundown on what’s to come.
Billy Goats Gruff & Other Stuff | AUG. 10-13. For ages 4 + up. A cranky troll, some persnickety chickens, a wolf that’s allergic to blueberries and other kooky characters tell traditional folktales and original stories with glove, rod, and hand-and-rod puppets. By All Hands Productions of Atlanta.
- Mother Goose | AUG. 15-SEPT. 17. For ages 2 + up. Mother Goose is missing! Young theatergoers will sing, wiggle and clap with Mary Mary as they sort out rhymes and find clues to Mother Goose’s whereabouts. A Theatre for the Very Young production adapted by Atlanta puppeteer Amy Sweeney.
- Charlotte’s Web | SEPT. 19-OCT. 22. For ages 4 + up. An award-winning tale of friendship adapted by Joseph Robinette from E.B. White’s children’s novel.
The Three Little Pigs & More | OCT. 22-NOV. 5. For ages 4 + up. Folk tales from around the world — The Frog Prince from Germany, Three Billy Goats Gruff from Scandinavia and The Three Little Pigs from England — combine for a morning or afternoon that digs deep into storytelling. With glove, hand-and-rod and rod puppets. By Grey Seal Puppets of Charlotte, N.C.
- Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer | NOV. 7-DEC. 31. All ages. Adapted by Ludwig from the classic 1960s’ Rankin/Bass TV special.
- The Adventures of the Gingerbread Man | JAN. 2-7, 2018. For ages 4 + up. Another session of folktales, with Hansel and Gretel, Androcles and the Lion, The Frog Prince and The Three Wishes. Told with glove, rod, and hand-and-rod puppetry by All Hands Productions.
- Rainforest Adventures | JAN. 23-MARCH 4. For ages 4 + up. It’s a jungle out there as this trip to the Amazonian rainforest proves. Performed with marionettes. By Stephanie Bogle, Raylynn Hughes and Ludwig.
- The Wizard of Oz | MARCH 6-18. For ages 4 + up. Dorothy travels down the Yellow Brick Road to find out why the Lion, the Tinman, and the Strawman are singing the blues. Performed with marionettes by Frisch Marionettes of Cincinnati.
- Dr. Seuss’ The Cat in the Hat | MARCH 20-MAY 13. For ages 4 + up. Adapted from the Seuss book by writer/director Katie Mitchell for the National Theatre of Great Britain. Ludwig directs here. Performed with rod puppets.
New Directions Series for Adults & Teens
The Ghastly Dreadfuls | OCT. 11-28. A spooktacular musical salute to the season of ghosts and goblins by Ludwig and puppeteer Jason Hines. For ages 18 + up.
- The Pigeoning | FEB. 9-18, 2018. By Robin Frohardt of Brooklyn.
- Xperimental Puppetry Theater (XPT) | MAY 10-13. By various artists. For ages 18 + older only.
- ParaNorman | AUG. 5 (87 mins; rated G). When zombies, ghosts and witches besiege a small town, the only one who can help is a local boy named Norman, who speaks with the dead.
- The Dark Crystal Fan Films | SEPT. 30 (50 mins). For ages 18 + up. See the winning films and finalists of the Jim Henson Co. competition. Includes a talkback with the filmmakers and Cheryl Henson, an actor and the daughter of master puppeteer Jim Henson.
Emmet Otter’s Jug Band Christmas | DEC. 9 (48 mins; rated PG). Ma and Emmet Otter enter a talent contest hoping to win and use the money for Christmas presents.
- Shaun the Sheep | JAN. 20, 2018 (85 mins; rated PG). Shaun takes the day off to have some fun and gets mixed up with a farmer, a caravan and a steep hill that leads to a big-city adventure.
- Tomorrow We Disappear | FEB. 3 (80 mins). A documentary for ages 15 + up about Kathputli, India’s colony of artists, magicians, acrobats and puppeteers, who wrangle with the reality of eviction. Screening includes a talkback with one of the film’s directors.
- I Am Big Bird: The Caroll Spinney Story | APRIL 14 (90 mins). For ages 18 + up. A documentary that profiles the man who has played Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch on “Sesame Street” since 1969.