Most nights, I have to limit my puppet-show attendance to fingerplays in my living room. Yesterday evening, I left my neighborhood home to attend a puppet-show in someone else's neighborhood home. The twelve audience members nibbled on chocolate cookies and sipped champagne before we were led downstairs into the dark recesses of The Womb Theatre to see a gothic melodramatic puppet-show called The Compendium of Nastiness. For an hour, we cringed and shuddered over the nefarious deeds of the evil Uncle Osmond as he terrorized his niece, the innocent Angela. Ki Gottberg of Seattle University wrote the play, and Elizabeth Kenny acted out all of the parts of the characters including an ambitious turn as Percy, the heroine's hobo romantic interest. (Percy attempts to disguise himself as a monk but inevitably betrays his true nature as Elizabeth Kenny's thumb.)
Are you intrigued yet? If so, read more, or better yet, attend the puppet-show. Show dates have been extended into January 2006.
And now, I have grand ambitions once more to stage my own puppet show. Attack of the Combs was just the beginning. Somehow, I need to figure out how to fit fourteen audience members into my home. Then, I will have to think about lighting and sound. I'm sure I'll need to make a poster or two. Sometime before actual opening night, I will figure out an actual story for the audience. (That is exactly how I used to plan my puppet-shows, as my parents can attest. Unfortunately, I rarely made it past the poster-making stage. Early on, my mother informed me that "dress rehearsal" meant doing an actual run-through of the show, not simply deciding what costumes the puppets would wear.)