Puppetry in America is older than the country itself, but until the beginning of the 20th century, puppet shows were rare. Puppeteers kept their art a closely guarded secret, certainly not shared with the public. In the first half of the 20th century, some puppeteers (most notably Tony Sarg) helped to lift the veil of secrecy, sharing information about their work, which led to the formation of the Puppeteers of America in 1937.
The Austin Public Library serves as one of only two library systems in the nation offering this unique programming. Through the years, the puppet program has ebbed and flowed; beginning in the mid-70's as the Traveling Puppet Theatre, then Echo’s Pals, and finally Literature Live! When former children come to our performances as parents, they show us what a deep and lasting impression these living stories made on the memories of their childhoods. This positive experience so early in life made many of them lifetime library users.
The National Day of Puppetry is April 24 and has been a nationwide celebration since 1999. Literature Live! invites you to join us in celebrating this unique art form by making puppets! Check out our videos and Make Your Own Spider Marionette and Make Your Own Newspaper Puppet. Also, while supplies last, our curbside locations are giving away bookmarks that have a pattern for making a minature spider marionette. Stay tuned to APL+ for Literature Live's next virtual offering, “Why Cowboys Sing in Texas.”
See you at the theatre!