2017 Festival Archive: Volkenburg Puppetry Symposium

Ellen van Volkenburg Puppetry Symposium

January 22 & 28, 2017

MCA Chicago, Edlis Neeson Theatre and the Studebaker Theatre

Presented by the Gray Center for Arts and Inquiry at the University of Chicago in cooperation with Blair Thomas & Co. and the MCA Chicago.

Moderator: John Bell (Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry) with guests from the University of Chicago


Puppetry and the Human Body 

What kind of performance dynamics emerge between fabricated puppets and human bodies? Panelists: Magali Chouinard (Montreal), Stephanie Diaz (Chicago), Geumhyung Jeong (South Korea), Narcissister (Brooklyn)

Puppets as Narrative Vehicles 

How do puppets tell stories, and what is distinct about their theatrical language? Panelists: Yngvild Aspeli (Director, Plexus Polaire, France), Sarah Fornace (Co-director, Manuel Cinema, Chicago), Dominga Gutierrez (Co-director, Silencio Blanco, Chile ), Michael Sommers (Director, Open Eye Figure Theatre, Minneapolis), Santiago Tobar (Co-director, Silencio Blanco, Chile) 

Literary & Cultural Adaptation: The Shahnameh

Hear from the artists and adaptors of Feathers of Fire, the spectacle shadow puppet production of the Persian Book of Kings, as they consider cultural translations, traditional and contemporary imagery, and shadow puppetry. Panelists: Hamid Rahmanian (Director and Designer, Feathers of Fire), Ahmad Sadri (Translator and Gorter Professor of Islamic World Studies and Professor of Sociology at Lake Forest College, with guests from the University of Chicago