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Becoming a professional puppeteer

Discussion in 'Puppet Building and Performing' started by MoguiViper9, Jul 22, 2002.

  1. MoguiViper9

    MoguiViper9 Member

    The other day a friend of mine asked me how come I never put on puppet shows seeing as how I am a huge fan of Muppets. I replied that I'll leave all the hard work to the professionals and just enjoy their work as much as I can. Then she asked why I don't become a professional. I was wondering what the first steps would be if you did want to become a professional puppeteer (I'm not interested in being a puppeteer, but her question got me wondering)?
  2. matleo

    matleo Well-Known Member

    hey Mogui,

    best pieces of advice given to me in becoming a puppeteer. Hmmm....

    1) Just do it. Sitting at home watching the Muppets it's nice but you don't learn anything that way. Even if it's real amateurish at the start..it's a start and the first step is always the hardest. It's 10X easier for me to build a puppet than it was when I started building 9 years ago. But I knew I had to take the first step in order to get here now. it's like learnign to play piano. You learn scales and then you learn a song.

    2) get involved in Puppeteers of America and if your area has a puppetry guild, join it!! You'll met a lot of people with a ton of history and they (most of them) are very willing to help give advice.

    3) Learn Everything!!! Science, History, Social Studies, Literature, Painting, Drawing, Acting, Sculpture, Dance, Music, Woodwork, it all comes up eventually. Reading is good. A few people here have heard this story I think, but I once spent 3 months in Phoenix with the clothes on my back and an air mattress to sleep on and the only thing I had to do for entrtainment was listen to my clock radio and read books from the local library. I learned so much that summer. my puppet company now could not exist without it.

    Those are I think the three best pieces of advice. It sounds daunting but in the end it's really it's own reward. It's the greatest job in the world!! And as you see your own progress it's gives you a real feeling of accoplishment. I'd be interested to hear some other puppeteers thoughts in here on this subject. Hope this helps answer your question.

  3. MoguiViper9

    MoguiViper9 Member

    Wow, that's some hardcore advice

    Thanks alot man! When I posted the question I wasn't really interested in becoming a puppeteer, but now you got me all excited. We have something similar to a Puppeteer's Guild in my area (They go around and perform at schools and churches, plus they actually have classes you can take) and I have already contacted them. Once again thanks alot.

  4. doctort13

    doctort13 Well-Known Member

    For those of you wishing to join Puppeteers of America here is the link: http://www.puppeteers.org

    The local guilds are a GREAT way to meet puppeteers of all levels and styles of puppetry. If anyone reading lives in the greater Cincinnati/Dayton Ohio area, drop me an email. I am the newletter editor of the Cincinnati Area Puppetry Guild. We are always looking for new members, plus we have many Muppets fans in the guild! :)
  5. matleo

    matleo Well-Known Member


    Nice to meet you newsletter editor of the Cinncinnatti guild. Im the membership officer for the Garden State Guild. We just got our charter Yeah!!!!! Hope to meet you at one of the national fests sometime.


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