On Site (August 11 - 15)

Chicken Soup, Chicken Soup by WonderSpark Puppets

Chicken Soup, Chicken Soup is a highly interactive puppet show based on the beloved PJ Library book by Pamela Mayer. The story revolves around two grandmothers, one Jewish and one Chinese, who come up with elaborate ways to show their granddaughter that their cultural heritage (their chicken soup) is the best. We visit the Book of Ruth as well as the Monkey King. The themes in this story include mixed-race families, cultural heritage, and the joy of cooking. Chicken Soup, Chicken Soup was incubated and premiered at the 14th St Y Theater.

Z. Briggs (puppet builder, co-director) drew upon her own family history when creating the puppets for Chicken Soup, Chicken Soup. The Jewish Grandmother in the show was made to resemble her own Grandma Mary, who lovingly taught her how to cook Jewish dishes when she was a child.

Chad Williams (writer, co-director) has been performing solo hand puppet shows for 11 years, including at the first International Puppet Fringe Festival NYC. He has written, directed and performed over 15 original puppet plays and has done shows overseas in Thailand and Taiwan. Chad is a current Fulbright Specialist and a board member of UNIMA-USA. 

La Macanuda by Deborah Hunt
Obra unipersonal de Deborah Hunt 

A magical masked creature (The Red Macanuda) is the caretaker of journeys. She operates a suitcase on legs connected to a large antenna, communicating with other creatures in her world. Her story is one of compassion in troubling times. 

Una criatura mágica, La Macanuda es una cuidadora de viajes. Opera un maletín/teatro con patas conectado a una antena grande, así se comunica con otras criaturas en su mundo. Su cuento es uno de compasión exuberante en tiempos difíciles, donde ofrece solidaridad a gente que huye de desastres o un peligro común en su propio país. Es un personaje fantástico, valiente y generoso. Utilizando una máscara/cuerpo grande, títeres, objetos, panorama móvil y pergamino largo de tela, La Macanuda es una obra singular apto para toda la familia.

La Macanuda estrenó en San Juan, Puerto Rico en el 2018 y desde entonces se ha presentado en EEUU (Nueva York, Baltimore, New Orleans Jazz Fest, Puppeteers of America International Puppetry Festival 2019 Minneapolis), Festival Wertep (Poldaski, Polonia), Transit Festival (Odin Teatret, Dinamarca) y como parte de giras nacionales en Puerto Rico organizado por el Instituto de Cultura Puertorriqueña. El personaje principal fue físicamente creado en Puerto Rico y desarrollado durante el Festival Magdalena Munich en Alemania en los principios de 2018. 

Once Upon a Time in the Lower East Side By Junktown Duende Collective

Our show will show off multiple styles of puppetry in a whimsical story, a flight of fantasy that nevertheless portrays the real struggles, joys and triumphs of the multi-ethnic and immigrant communities that have thrived in, and shaped the neighborhood. We will highlight struggles with development, police brutality, and gentrification, and the fight for housing rights and public community spaces. We will introduce an array of iconic luminaries, artists, activists, poets, puppeteers and gardeners, who all left their mark on the lower east side.

Penguin in my Pocket by Kurt Hunter Marionettes

Penguin in my Pocket tells the fun-filled and quirky tale of a penguin scientist who crash lands in the jungle when her experimental jetpack fails, and how she works with an artistic monkey to find her way home — encountering a sea monster along the way. It’s a solo show featuring marionettes, rod puppets, audience member puppeteers, and a concertina.

The Shari Lewis Legacy Show by Mallory Lewis and LambChop

The Shari Lewis Legacy Show – A musical tribute to beloved entertainer, Shari Lewis, starring her daughter Mallory Lewis and Lamb Chop! Filled with comedy, song, and curated, never before seen footage of Shari and Lamb Chop through the decades, this event will delight audiences of ALL ages! Join Mallory, Lamb Chop and even Charlie Horse and Hush Puppy in a trip through time, back to when everything was simpler and kinder, with lots of laughs for the young and especially the young at heart! A show the whole family will enjoy!

Little Red’s Hood by Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre

Little Red’s Hood is a fresh retelling of the classic “Little Red Riding Hood” tale updated with a modern sensibility that appeals to kids. 

In this story, Little Red is a smart, young city dweller who is obsessed with her smartphone. Wulfric, a misunderstood wolf with a sweet tooth, crosses paths with Little Red on her travels to deliver her Grandma cupcakes and the trouble begins. This story offers a comical lesson on the importance of disconnecting from our digital lives and enjoy real life moments with friends and family. 

Harlem River Drive by Bruce Cannon

Harlem River Drive celebrates the history and diversity of the world’s most famous black community –New York City’s Harlem in a performance by famed New York City puppeteer Bruce Cannon.  Hand puppet characters  Uncle Mervin and his nephew Abdul explore the history and diversity of Harlem and through their different perspectives, we learn about the trials, tribulations and historic landmarks of this dynamic neighborhood. The colorful marionettes and hand puppets in this documentary and cabaret one-man production are both entertaining and educational. This show runs approximately 50 minutes and is family friendly.

Triple Zhongkui Pageant by Chinese Theatre Works

Chinese Theatre Works is proud to present for the 2nd International Puppet Fringe Festival the World premiere of portions of a new outdoor processional work:  The Triple Zhongkui Pageant!  

Zhongkui, the celebrated Chinese Judge of the Dead will bring Justice to the Lower East Side! Featuring giant and not-so-giant puppets, Chinese opera, music, dragons and more! 

Directed by: Kuang-Yu Fong and Stephen Kaplin; Puppet design:  Stephen Kaplin; With: Harrison Greene, Yuling Fang and Shan Jing
Music by: Gang Tian, and Junling Fan

Karagoz (Traditional Anatolia Shadow Theatre) by U.S. Karagoz Theatre Company

The Forest of the Witch is a modern interpretation of Karagoz, literally Black-Eye, who is the hero of traditional Anatolian shadow play. The story of The Forest of the Witch is adapted from a play named The Bloody Tree of Turkish shadow theatre performer Muhittin Sevilen. The story is turned into a screenplay after being rewritten by Ayhan Hulagu. Karagoz and Hacivat are the lead characters of an exemplary subject of The Forest of the Witch like all classic shadow texts.The Forest of the Witch is a universal theme for everyone. Karagoz fights with a huge tree which turns green in the middle of a neighborhood. He cuts all branches of the tree and then prepares them as wood in order to set on fire during winter. After a while, he learns that the tree is magical. But there is nothing to do. Then Karagoz turns into a donkey, while his close friend Hacivat is being transformed into a goat. The puppets of Karagoz and Hacivat are made from the hide of a camel or water buffalo like those made during the era of the Ottoman Empire. The puppets are designed and made from natural colors by the performing artist and they are staged with the aim of conventional methods. In general, classical Karagoz music is being played during shadow play. All the characters are performed by a single artist. The Forest of the Witch is being turned into a screenplay faithfully by taking into consideration that Karagoz theatre is included in the UNESCO’s list of Intangible Cultural Heritage. For all ages. Running time: 45 minutes.

The Marzipan Bunny by A Couple of Puppets

In this partially perishable puppet show, Chef mixes up a mess of delicious concoctions including Itty Bitty, a bunny made of marzipan. Ingredients come to life in this baking adventure.

Live accordion accompaniment by Charly Notturno!

Salt Over Gold and other Czech & Slovak Fairy Tales With Strings by Czechoslovak-American Marionette Theatre

Vít Hořejš performs a one-man show of Czech fairy tales (in English) replete with kings, clever village maidens, witches and spirits.  His marionettes speak in dozens of voices, dance, play violin, swim and fly.  The program will be composed of favorite Czech and Slovak fairy tales such as “Salt over Gold”  (a Princess who values her father “only” as much as salt, is banished, but returns to save her father when salt disappears), “The Stingy Tailor”  (a proud and stingy tailor is taught a lesson by the water goblin “Vodnik”) and “Kacha and the Devil”  (a shepherd outwits the devil who is pursued by a dance-loving shrew).

Accompaniment by Tine Kinderman, on musical saw.

Los Grises/The Gray Ones by Teatro SEA

LOS GRISES/THE GRAY ONES is a celebration of old age and a call to inclusiveness, with the aim of motivating and encouraging us to pay greater attention to the well-being of our seniors. Set to the backdrop of Boleros, Tangos, Mambos and the various musical genres from yesteryear. Join a few senior members of our community, represented by eight hybrid puppets in a vignette based, unscripted street performance, as they take a walk down memory lane and share their experiences, dreams and stories through movement, dance and pantomime, no words at all.

The Colors of Frida by Teatro SEA

A bilingual, one-woman show about the great Mexican painter Frida Kahlo, which combines storytelling, music, visual arts, puppets and audience participation.

Virtual (August 16 - 31)

Dallae Story by ArtstageSAN (South Korea)

Dallae Story is a nonverbal puppet show. It is about an ingenuous child named Dallae and her ordinary family, whose lives are interrupted by Korean War (1950–1953). The piece does not directly talk about the war itself, but rather portrays the efforts of a family to overcome hardship during wartime in a fairy tale-like fantasy. The story is expressed through hand manipulation of the puppets, beginning with Dallae’s birth to her sweet childhood with her family and then finally to wartime, with sets of the four seasons representing both the stages of life and the passage of time.

Spinning a Tale by Bait 9 (Israel)

The show “Spinning a Tale” is a contemporary adaptation of the classic fairy-tale `Sleeping Beauty`, presented through puppets, wool and motion.

The plot is weaved out of the two actresses, their movements, and their skirts. During the show these skirts are transformed – from clothing articles to scenery, from mellowness to danger, and from danger to a deep, enchanting slumber. The show presents the journey of a princess, as she leaves her safe and calm home, to explore the exciting outside world. A prick of her finger by a knitting needle puts her into a deep sleep. How will she wake up?

A mixture of puppet-theater and concert-dance, the show is focused mainly on the visual aspects of the performing arts – movements, textures, forms and colours, and the ways these elements interact. As the show is not verbal in nature and follows the plot of a well-known fairy-tale, it is very easy to follow and understand.

Unlike traditional puppet theater, in Spinning a Tale the actresses are present on the stage, which allows direct communication with the audience during the show. Spinning a Tale is an interactive show, in which the children are partners in the attempts to wake the princess up.

The show participated in festivals both in Israel and around the world, including The First International Puppet Festival in Yangon, Myanmar, The ‘International Puppet Theatre Festival Albania’ in Tirana, Albania, The 52nd International Puppet Theatre Festival – PIF in Zagreb,Croatia, The International Puppet Festival in Jerusalem, Israel, and the International Puppet Festival in Holon, Israel.

Iara the waters’ charm by Cia Luinato (Brazil)

Contemporary shadow theatre

Iara – is the mythical legend about a mermaid told by the indigenous peoples of Brazil. In this play indigenous and foreign references blend together into a new form. With music and forms as the central element, the story is told almost without words.  Lights, textures and shadows are projected behind and in front of the screen, creating the mythical silhouettes of bodies and figures that merge into new stunning images.

An Indian from the village dreams of a supernatural woman. When he wakes up, he seeks advice from the village’s Pajé to try to understand the mysteries of this woman and discovers the story of Iara. Enchanted by the mermaid, he plunges into his own destiny. Created with the younger public in mind, the play is inspired by Iara’s indigenous legend and using contemporary shadow Theatre resources and it aims to raise awareness of oral traditions of indigenous people of Brazil.

The Cellos’ Dialogue by Deniz Khateri (NYC – Iran)

The Cellos’ Dialogue is an experiment on using musical instruments and sounds as puppets while telling the story of an immigrant Iranian woman in the US who contemplates keeping an unwanted child. Musical experimentation, animated objects, shadow images, video projection and poetic language paint an expression portrait of the struggles of a woman from the middle east trying to fit into the western society.

When land becomes water by The Ishara Puppet Theatre Trust  (India)

Based on a set of books by Neeta Premchand that tell the tale of the Flood as it exists in Indian, Mesopotamian and Biblical mythology, the SOI Chamber Orchestra and the Ishara Puppet Theatre Trust come together to present a new performance that shows the universality of our stories and how, despite all our differences, we are all united.

La Caja by Escultores del aire (Spain)

A group of doctors strive to find the cure of a mysterious ailment. Their patient, Martinez suffers from a rare psychic condition developed after a traumatic event at sea. His condition worsens as he becomes submerged in an imaginary inferno, blurring the boundaries between fact and fantasy.

Un grupo de médicos intenta dar con la cura a una dolencia. Exponen a los asistentes el caso de Martínez, y de cómo piensan tratarlo. Martínez padece un raro trastorno psíquico producto de un fuerte trauma en el mar. La frontera entre realidad y ficción es cada vez más ambigua y Martínez se pierde en sus recuerdos. Dentro de una caja está la cura a su mal, pero… ¿qué hay dentro de la caja? ¿por qué le cuesta tanto abrirla? Todos tenemos una caja en la que guardamos aquello que queremos olvidar.¿Se atreverá Martínez a abrir la suya?

Un kilo de harina by Fernan Cardama (Argentina)

With one kilo of flour you can make six pizzas, a hundred pancakes, one hundred and twenty four sorrentinos and a paste for 4 puppets heads. With one kilo of flour, we will tell you the story of Giuseppe and his family; a family like any other who had to immigrate to find a better future.

Object Theatre for a family audience.

Con un kilo de harina se puede hacer seis pizzas, cien panqueques, ciento veinticuatro sorrentinos y engrudo para cuatro cabezas de títeres. Nosotrxs, con un kilo de harina, te contamos la historia de Giuseppe y su familia; una familia como tantas otras que tuvo que emigrar buscando un futuro mejor.

Teatro de objetos para público familiar.

La main qui donne by Ivoire Marionnettes (Côte d’Ivoire)

Kotching, the mother of hands, expecting generosity and solidarity and Kowôhô the original black hand, undertake a journey to learn the art of giving without humiliating or dominating the person who receives and to learn the art of receiving without blaming the person who gives. Various stages of reflection will allow the understanding of enriched diversity. Who said that the hand that gives is always above the one that receives?

Kotching, la mère des mains, enceinte de générosité et de solidarité et Kowôhô la Main Noire originelle, entreprennent un voyage initiatique pour apprendre l’art de donner sans humilier ni dominer celui qui reçoit et l’art de recevoir sans culpabiliser celui qui donne. Diverses étapes de réflexions vont permettre l’accouchement de la diversité qui enrichit. Qui a dit que la main qui donne est toujours au dessus de celle qui reçoit?

Alicia en busca del conejo blanco by Teatro de las Estaciones (Cuba)

Adaptation of Lewis Carroll original novel by Rubén Darío Salazar.
Concept and visual idea de Rubén Darío Salazar y Zenén Calero

One day Alicia, a restless girl and daydreamer who hates to study, gets lost in her own dreams. There she has a big adventure with characters who resemble those in her real life.

Adaptación sobre la novela original de Lewis Carroll por Rubén Darío Salazar. 
Concepto e idea visual de Rubén Darío Salazar y Zenén Calero

Alicia es una niña intranquila y soñadora que no le gusta estudiar. Un día se pierde en su propio sueño y allí encuentra a personajes parecidos a los de la vida real que le harán vivir una gran aventura…

Deshuesadero Suite by Deshuesadero T (Mexico)

A dance of bodies finding each other. Human Fragments trying to be seen during an incredible journey of reconstruction. A beautiful and ridiculous game of harassement, torture and death. 

A Musical, Non-verbal performance with masks and objects, inspired by the forced dissapearance and human trafficking. 

Una danza de cuerpos buscándose a sí mismos. Fragmentos humanos buscando ser reconocidos a través de un increíble viaje de reconstrucción. Un bello y ridículo juego de acoso, tortura y muerte.

Espectáculo silente (no verbal) musical para máscaras y objetos inspirado en el tema de la desaparición forzada y el tráfico humano.

Disclaimer: The International Puppet Fringe Festival NYC is a production of The Society of the Educational Arts,, The Moran Group and their collaborators. None of these organizations are associated with The Present Theatre Company, Inc., The New York International Fringe Festival or FringeNYC.

For information about the latter, please visit

© International Puppet Fringe NYC, 2021.