Puppets Take Over The Big Apple: UNIMA-USA at the International Puppet Fringe Festival


The Big Apple will host the 1st International Puppet Fringe Festival (IPFFNYC) August 9-12 at The Clemente Soto Vélez Cultural and Educational Center on the Lower East Side. The festival will feature performances, exhibits, and symposiums. Ticket and VIP access passes are on sale now. For more information, please visit www.puppetfringenyc.com or call 212 529-1545 for more information! 

Festival Producer Manuel Moran, who served as President of UNIMA-USA in 2016 and 2017 and who continues to serve as a Vice President of UNIMA International, is the moving force behind the event that adds to the puppet "must-do" calendar for summer of 2018  (along with the Puppeteers of America regional festivals: Pacific Northwest in Calgary, Alberta June 1-3 and Southeast Regional in Asheville, NC June 28-July 1). This  IPFFNYC offering is planned to create an ongoing tradition and, for those spending summer in the city (or traveling to join), this event promises to beat the heat with puppetry. 

UNIMA-USA will be holding its annual Membership meeting (and streaming it live on our Facebook) at the venue on Friday, August 10 at 4pm (more information will be forthcoming). At noon on Saturday, August 11 (see final schedule), Members of the current UNIMA-USA Board will be presenting a panel discussing how puppetry and UNIMA-USA linkages can open a world of art, friendship, and collaboration. Karen Smith will discuss the World Encyclopedia of Puppetry Arts (WEPA) showing how it can alert you to the who, what, why, and where of puppets in places you might be heading. Kurt Hunter (Concordia University) will note how recent participation in UNIMA Festivals in France and Germany has fed his performance and teaching. Steven Kaplin (Chinese Theatre Works) will talk about going global with China. Kathy Foley (UC-Santa Cruz) will present on possibilities for learning and collaborating in Indonesia looking toward the 2020 Bali UNIMA World Puppetry Festival.  Colette Searls (UM-Baltimore County) will present on training she did in Brussels and how it has impacted her creative work. We invite you all to join!

Moran's Teatro SEA will present their award-winning and recently remounted/rebuilt  production, Sueño: A Latino take on Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, free for the community with its 25 actors, singers, dancers, and puppeteers. Teatro SEA’s “Latinized” version of this theatrical classic aims to spark interest in young and underserved audiences that do not ordinarily have the opportunity to see Shakespeare’s work. With 65 carnival puppets, stilt walkers, and masks including “Vejigantes and Cabezudos” (folkloric characters from Puerto Rico, used in festival celebrations), this production extends the presentations of Shakespeare’s work in Latin America (which dates back to the 1800s). It will allow Americans to see an adapted Latino version of the master’s play. The Clemente, Teatro Latea, and UNIMA’s Three Americas commission are venue partners.  .