Robin Frohardt

Chicago Puppet Fest presents The Plastic Bag Store. The Festival’s “anchor attraction” is open for the duration of the festival in a street-level storefront in Chicago’s Wrigley Building. New York artist Robin Frohardt’s tragi-comic ode to the foreverness of plastic appears to be a storefront grocery, but it’s actually stocked with hundreds of hand-made items—all crafted from organic NYC trash.

Cabinet of Curiosity

Chicago Puppet Fest presents Sea Change. Cabinet of Curiosity transforms their celebrated outdoor exploration of the power of the sea and the feminine divine for the MCA mainstage.

Basil Twist

Chicago Shakespeare Theater & Chicago Puppet Fest present Dogugaeshi. Recipient of the Rome Prize, master puppeteer, Basil Twist unfolds an intimate, abstract, contemporary journey of images and emotions influenced by the rarefied tradition of Japanese dogugaeshi stage mechanism technique.

Prelude Reception

Join Festival Directors, lead artists and VIPs for a special prelude to the opening night performances. Enjoy hors d’oeuvres and toast the opening of the 4th Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival prior to heading over to one of the three theaters hosting an opening night show. Show tickets sold separately.

Free Neighborhood Tour

Navy Pier & Chicago Puppet Fest present the Free Neighborhood Tour. The Neighborhood Tour fosters an appreciation of puppetry outside of traditional mainstage settings all around the city. Free performances from: Ty Defoe, Jerrell L. Henderson, and Joshua Holden.

Post-Show Celebration

After seeing a 7pm performance of The Plastic Bag Store, Dogugaeshi or Sea Change on Opening Night, come join the celebration as together we revel in and support the return of the festival with artists and friends at the Festival’s new studios. Enjoy this fun gathering with treats, drinks and an inside peek at the Festival headquarters, our special courtyard, the Puppet Studio, the Puppet Lab, workshop hub and more, in Chicago’s landmark Fine Arts Building.

Nasty, Brutish & Short

Links Hall, Rough House & Chicago Puppet Fest present Nasty, Brutish & Short. This is your chance to double or triple down on an evening of puppetry by hitting the late show to round out your puppetry day.

Maria Camia

Chicago Puppet Fest presents New Mony!. In the human cloning family business, Allimah lives a quiet, regiment life with her parents. But while recovering in a hospital, her dreams slowly become reality and she finds herself connected to the prestigious Utopian planet called Aricama.

Free Neighborhood Tour

Navy Pier & Chicago Puppet Fest present the Free Neighborhood Tour. The Neighborhood Tour fosters an appreciation of puppetry outside of traditional mainstage settings all around the city. Free performances from: Ty Defoe, Jerrell L. Henderson, and Joshua Holden.

Neo Futurists

The Neo Futurists & Chicago Puppet Fest present I, OBJECT! 30 Puppet Plays in 30 Minutes. From Chicago’s celebrated Neo Futurists comes this all original, all new series of short works by local theater-makers giving you a dunk into object performance and high-speed theater.

Nick Lehane

Instituto Cervantes Chicago & Chicago Puppet Fest present Chimpanzee. From award-winning, Brooklyn-based puppet artist and theater maker, Nick Lehane, comes heartfelt, poignant, and stranger-than-fiction stories of chimpanzees raised as children in human homes.