Short-form puppeteers slam the Center for Puppetry Arts this weekend in a three-day event featuring artists from across the country.

puppetslam_450x287 2The 2016 National Puppet Slam features the best in short-form puppet theater — eight pieces in all — that have survived local and regional competitions to reach the national level.

The three-day event at the Midtown space is for age 18+ only. Shows are at 8 p.m. Friday-Saturday and 5 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $13 for center members, $18 for nonmembers. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.873.3391. A beer and wine bar will be open before the show and at intermission. The lineup:

  • Puppet People by New York puppeteer Joshua Holden. A piece created for participants at the National Puppetry Conference at the Eugene O’Neill Center in Waterford, Conn.
  • Let’s Be Frank by Bill Holznagel (artistic director at Signal Light Puppet Theatre in Portland, Ore.) with Paul Velasquez and Gavin CumminsAn improvised game show with your host, Frank, and his lovely assistant, Doug. A random playgoer will have a chance to win fabulous prizes.
  • Puppeteer Myra Su. Photo: Tyler Core
    Puppeteer Myra Su. Photo: Tyler Core

    Through the Lookingglass by Chicago artists Myra Su, Mitch Salm and Allyson Gonzalez. A psychological thriller set in backcountry America, where a young boy on his inaugural deer hunt confronts death and the savage power of mankind for the first time.

  • The Greatest Hand Shadow Play Ever Written by Tim LagassePerformed by the playwright’s great-great-grandson. 
  • Caprice Egyptian by Thom Fountain, Richard Wilson, Patrick James Brymer and Christine Papalexis. A not-so-prima ballerina named Irina Bunionfootskya dances a piece based on the Cleopatra story. She emerges onstage to celebrate life but is confronted by a serpent hellbent on sealing her fate.
  • Emily Schubert's "Heart Splinters."
    Emily Schubert’s “Heart Splinters.”

    Heart Splinters by Emily SchubertWhat happens when the heart of the world breaks? A paper-cut shadow play about life’s interconnectedness and possibilities. It’s based on a dream Schubert had in January 2015.

  • The Ballad of Ellen and Sadie by Sam Grossman, Jessie Delaplaine, Devin Martin and Kristie Winther. A tale of ladies, ghosts and revenge inspired by traditional Appalachian ballads and stories of water monsters from around the world.
  • A Dream of ME by East Coast puppeteer Honey Goodenough with Harry LaCoste. Familiar characters take a transformative journey while looking for love, romance and, perhaps, a happy ending.