Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Opening Night of the Natl Puppetry Convention

I'm so excited! Here I am in the sweltering heat of Atlanta, GA, and I don't care in the least. Why? Because I'm at the National Puppetry Convention. Wahoo!
As most opening days go, it was a lot of get here, get checked in, drag your stuff to a not-so-nearby dorm and such...finding it all easily on multiple maps of this huge campus.
The Exhibit and Store are both being set up, so there's not much to look at. The occasional young puppeteer is about with a usually glove-rod Muppet-style puppet on their hand/arm which always have extremely cute high-pitch squeaky voices. But other than that, you pretty much gotta wait until the Opening Ceremonies.
This year it was lead off by an open letter to Obama reading...the same one published in the Playboard which I understand was created by a committee of thousands on an online Puppet Boards called 'PupCrit' (SP?).
Followed immediately by the first performance by Mallory Lewis who had also performed at our Regional in Tacoma. Everyone seemed to forget that and kept saying that this was her first Festival--um--no--National, yes--Festival, no. It was good, but I was too far away from the stage to enjoy the puppetry. Ventriloquists play better in smaller settings or with the help of a monitor. Alas!
The second show had great music, stunning visuals, inspiring ideas, and people snoring in the audience. I, myself, stayed awake--mostly because I was desperately trying to understand the plot. I have a great fear of these types of shows--that everyone is just going to rave at them and I'm not gonna get it. I was terrible at poetry interpretation in High School, you see. I shouldn't experience was the consensus. But, everyone said, it did have potential.
That show was immediately followed by the opening reception where I got to see and chat with many friends and acquaintances. Here are some pictures:

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