Skirball Amazement: Puppet Festival

Join a full day of marionette-y, string-sweet entertainment at the cultural center.

While we don't always have the tools on hand to start a craft project, or to create a painting, or even cook a meal we find online (do we still have onion powder?), we can all do something puppet-like in a matter of seconds.

If that means sticking a sock over your hand and making it talk -- or drawing eyes and a mouth on your fingers, no sock required -- then fine: You've got yourself a puppet. And puppets, as time and tales have shown, can often act in ways we long to act, say funnier things, behave in a freer fashion. Call them our alter egos, or just a way to let off some creative steam, but we love them.

Especially, it seems, around LA, home to the Muppets and the place where Bob Baker's Marionettes got their sweet start.

And the Skirball Cultural Center taps into our puppet-focused interests each year with a full day of performances, films, and hobnobbing. That date for 2016 is Sunday, April 17, and a whole host of happenings are on the slate, from an "inspired take on Leonardo da Vinci's 'flying machines' and the eternal quest for flight" to cameos by a firebird and pup.

Workshops, too, dot the roster, with Rogue Artists Ensemble, LA Guild of Puppetry, Johanna Smith, and TJ3 Productions all leading informative chats on all things puppet-making, puppet-performing, and puppet life.

Other treats? Look for "Henson-trained puppeteer Jared Ramirez" as he "entertains with a whole cast of puppets." And some "stunningly large puppets" from Coyote Rising will visit the Skirball grounds.

Is it family friendly? Oh, very much so. Is there admission? A general adult ticket is twelve dollars.


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Did you read this post with your hand in the shape of a puppet? It's an art form so many of us have engaged in, without really even thinking about it or worrying over what we'll say or the story we'll tell.

Puppetry is pretty universal, and meaningful, too, whether there's a sock involved or several rods and strings.

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