What is Puppet Pop-Up Studio?
Puppet Pop-Up Studio is a monthly puppet making and performing workshop on the third Saturday of each month at different locations in Calgary.
Why is it at a different location each month?
We like to pop-up at different locations all over Calgary so we can reach people in all different neighbourhoods. We also have a Puppet Pop-Up Partner program where we collaborate with other community organizations who provide a venue and in turn we share what they do. Some of the organizations we have worked with are Fort Calgary, Haysboro Community Association, and the Calgary Catholic Immigration Society.
Who is Puppet Pop-Up for?
We welcome everyone – young and old to join us. This is not a program just for kids and adults participate with their youngsters or on their own. We try to scale the project so the young (but must be at least 4 years old) can make something. Older participants should feel they could take the project further with more details, design, and performance ability, and we’re happy to consult. Sometimes this means Pop Up is a bit chaotic because people come in all different ‘shapes and sizes’. We believe the greatest gift an adult can give a child is time spent doing something the child wants to do.
Do you have to be a performer to participate?
Puppetry is both drama and art but you certainly don’t need any experience in performing to participate. We always have a sharing component. It’s meant to be low stress and friendly – an opportunity to practice the lifelong skill of speaking in public. We applaud those who challenge themselves to do something that might be a bit uncomfortable. We enjoy the antics of the ‘natural performers’. You can always opt out.
Why don’t you use patterns?
We encourage imagination and creativity. While we give instructions, demonstrations and provide patterns for some of the tricky bits, we celebrate that every puppet ends up unique!
What if my puppet falls apart?
Hmmmm. Mother used to say, “the fun is in the making not in the keeping”, and we believe in process versus product. When you’ve finished loving your puppet we hope you recycle what you can – even if it needs to be dismembered (or in the case of “veggie puppets” eat or compost). We try to teach the construction methods that can keep the puppet together!
Who teaches the workshop?
The Artistic Director, Wendy Passmore-Godfrey, of WP Puppet Theatre teaches the workshops. She has over 25 years of teaching puppetry workshops and residencies in schools and beyond. WP Puppet Theatre subscribes to the Reggio Emilia education philosophy, which values the child as strong, capable and resilient; rich with wonder and knowledge. Every child brings with them deep curiosity and potential and this innate curiosity drives their interest to understand their world and their place within. For more information: reggiochildren.it