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March 21 to April 7, 2019
Theater for the New City, 155 First Avenue (at 10th Street) Manhattan
Presented by Theater for the New City
Thursdays-Saturdays at 8:00 pm, Sundays at 3:00 pm
Tickets $18 general admission, $15 seniors and students
Box office (212) 254-1109, www.theaterforthenewcity.net
This production is intended for audiences aged 6 to 106.

Czechoslovak-American Marionette Theatre (CAMT) re-imagines its perennially popular "Johannes Dokchtor Faust, a Petrifying Puppet Comedye," translated and directed by Vit Horejs. The story of the learned Johannes Faust, who sold his soul to the devil for ultimate knowledge, is staged with age-old technical tricks of Czech puppetry, including fire and thunder, hellish gargoyles and underwater creatures. A classic of the Czech marionette repertoire, it traditionally contains satires to make fun of a king or a local mayor. The company's adaptation was initially developed in 1990 and its topical references will be updated for current times.

Faust composite
L: Kasparek (Pimprle) rides on Mephisto's back. C: Faust is grilled by devils. R: Head of Vit Horejs with puppets of Dr. Faust, a minor Angel and a minor Devil.

The script is the first definitive American translation of the classic Czech text by the author known today only as "A.B." The main Mephistopheles puppet, about 26 inches high and about 100 years old, was fashioned in Kladno, Bohemia by Karel Krob, a mason and shoemaker. There are three copies of Mephisto, differently-sized, used to make him shrink and grow as he gains and loses power. Faust is a copy of a folk puppet originally crafted in a Czech-American company over 200 years ago. The balance of the 20-or-so puppets in the show come from the troupe's repertory, notably century-old Czech puppets discovered in 1990 in a hidden storeroom at the Jan Hus Church on East 74th Street. Recommended for ages 6-106.

Opening date, March 21, is World Puppet Day!

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On Friday, March 22 following the show, there will be a special one-hour reading of Christopher Marlowe's classic "Faust" script, directed by Elizabeth Ruf-Maldonado. Participants will be a select group of TNC and CAMT actors. The TNC cohort includes Artistic Director Crystal Field plus Jonathan Slaff, Brianna Bartenieff Emily Pezzella, Robert (Moe) Maloney, Elizabeth Ruf-Maldonado and Matt Roper. The CAMT group includes Vit Horejs, Bonnie Stein, Kerry Milliron, Michelle Beshaw, Deborah Beshaw-Farrell, Jane Catherine Shaw and Ben Watts; most of whom are members of the ensemble of "Johannes Dokchtor Faust." Soundscape is by Karl Bateman. Refreshments will be served. Admission is free but donations will be gratefully accepted.



The occasion of The Dark Lady Players' performance of "Shakespeare's Anti-Christian satires: The Virgin Mary Parodies" gave us the opportunity to investigate how Elizabethan Meta-Theater could be enacted with contemporary puppet theater.

So we asked John Hudson, the theorist and dramaturg of The Dark Lady Players, to illuminate the possibilities. We learned, in short, that all puppetry is metatheatrical but not all metatheater is puppetry.



PUPPETRY WITH A SOCIAL CONSCIENCE -- Theater for the New City hosted a panel entitled "Puppetry with a Social Conscience" on December 11, 2008. Some of New York's leading puppet theater artists discussed how our world is reflected in the eyes of the Puppet.

Panelists included Peter Schumann, head of Bread and Puppet Theater; Vit Horejs, head of the Czechoslovak-American Marionette Theater; Jane Catherine Shaw, co-artistic director of the Voice 4 Vision Puppet Festival; John Bell, theater journalist and puppet theater artist; and Eileen Blumenthal, author of "Puppetry: A World History," an authoritative book on puppet theater. The event was moderated by Crystal Field, Executive Director of Theater for the New City.

Listen to an audio recording of
"Puppetry with a Social Conscience"

If you navigate away from this page, this flash recording will stop. But you can listen to the recording while you browse: click here to play through your computer's media player. (Download time: five minutes) © Copyright 2008 Theater for the New City. All rights reserved--no commercial use or reproduction without permission.

Our slide show begins with photos from "Puppetry with a Social Conscience" and continues with selected photos of productions that participated in the Passport to Puppet Theater (precursor to this website) between 2005 and 2008. Photos by Jonathan Slaff.


About this website: NYpuppets.com is a successor to the Passport to Puppet Theater (2005-2008), which was a program sponsored by The Linux Loft and supported by the Jim Henson Foundation.

Presenters: If you would like to propose an offering for an upcoming puppet theater production for this page, contact us at: NYpuppets "at" acedsl.com. Describe your project and give us your contact info. Be creative! Offerings can include discount ticket offers, invitations to special previews and openings, meetings with artists (actors, directors, etc.) and much more. Visit out FAQ's.


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