Great Small Works 9th International TOY THEATER FESTIVAL
and Temporary Toy Theater Museum!
MAY 30 - JUNE 13, 2010 • St. Ann's Warehouse, DUMBO Brooklyn NYC
Friday May 21 7:00pm The Fabulous & The Feral
Festival Fundraiser Double Header
Sunday May 30 3:00pm
Greatest Smallest Parade FREE!
Toy Theater Museum Reception
Wednesday June 2 7:30pm
Program 1
Thursday June 3 7:30pm
Program 1
Friday June 4 7:30pm
Program 2
Saturday June 5 11:00am
Family Program I
Symposium I FREE!
Program 2
Sunday June 6 11:00am
Family Program I
Toy Theater Cabaret
Wednesday June 9 7:30pm Program 3
Thursday June 10 7:30pm
Program 3
Program 4
Friday June 11 7:30pm
Program 4
Program 5
Saturday June 12 1:00pm
Toy Theater Workshop
Symposium II FREE!
Program 5
Program 6
Sunday June 13 11:00am
Family Program 2
Family Program 2

Program 6

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Toy Theater Festival Pass $75
Individual Programs $20
Kids half-price

Festival Pass includes admission to all shows

Festival Pass holders are advised that
reservations must still be made for individual programs
by calling the box office @ 718.254.8779
(Tue - Sat 1:00pm - 7:00pm)

Mounted throughout St. Ann's Warehouse, see the finest examples of historical and contemporary toy theaters, representing visual artists reinterpreting the Toy Theater form, and collectors, including a group of classic Spanish stages from the collection of Lucia Contreras of Valencia. FREE and open to the public 1 hour before shotimes.
Opening Celebration Sunday May 30 (FREE!)

Greatest Smallest Parade • 3:00pm
The Opening Reception will be heralded by the first-ever Greatest Smallest Parade! Tiny floats accompanied by a full-force marching brass band will wind through the sidewalks of DUMBO and finish at the Warehouse, where all the shoebox-sized rolling masterpieces will be displayed.

Reception • 4:00 to 7:00pm
Meet the artists and view the expansive exhibition!


Wednesday June 2 @ 10:00pm
Thursday June 3 @ 10:00pm

Elviira Davidow, Iida Vanttaja & Kaitsu Kääräinen (Finland)
An icon of the Finnish landscape, the swamp depicted here is also a snapshot of the national mindset. An illustrated music performance exploring the deep layers of the swamp as the memory of nature.

Blair Thomas (Chicago)
The Book of Jonah
Mephistopheles, the greatest sinner of us all, preaches this famous story of Jonah’s journey into the belly of the whale and with resentment retells how he alone was saved.  Lifted from Father Mapple's sermon in Moby-Dick, at once a blasphemous and reverent story of spiritual transformation.

Little Blue Moon Theater (Vallejo, CA)
Mutiny on the Bounty
Focusing on the contrast between Bligh’s grueling lifeboat voyage and the director’s fantasy of tropical island life, this miniature production includes live music, dance, song, and as many naked island beauties as fit on the stage. With Michael and Valerie Nelson.

Mini-Performances in the Museum
Liz Hara The Little MermaidAlphabet Arts Toy Poets Theater Joanna Hruby The Weeping TreeGabe Harrell The Clown of GodLeslie Rogers & Zac Palladino Mouth ShowKate Brehm Unseen & Untouched • Dolly Wagglers Bare Minimum Theater

From John Mejias' Paping Brings You Pop-Up Theater
(See Program 2)


Friday June 4 at 10:00pm
Saturday June 5 at 10:00pm

John Mejias (NYC)
Paping Brings You Pop-Up Theater
Mejias tells stories of his job as public school art teacher in the Bronx: lost dogs on school property, fire drills gone terribly wrong and the sociology of school violence.

Meredith Miller (Chicago)
The Abduction
Inside three curtained stages worn on the performer’s body, characters that represent separate regions of the body play out an iconic tale of love and heartbreak. Also appearing at the Toy Theater Cabaret. (Sunday June 6).

Toni Schlesinger (NYC)
The Palace
Designed with Chris Maresca, the epic story of a grand and aging miniature movie palace as she fights for survival through the Moorish years, the noir years, the porn years, and the Straub and Huillet years. One day, a mysterious film is left in the lobby...

Puppeteers Coop (Boston & NYC)
Coney Island Death Trip
Sara Peattie and Theresa Linnihan chart the amazing adventure of Coney Island from its sinister inception in a cavern beneath Antarctica, to its miserable death and gaudy rebirth.

Mini-Performances in the Museum
Michael Cavanaugh Spurt of BloodTorry Bend House Care Gabe Harrell The Clown of God Michelle Beshaw The Line: A Telephone OdysseyKathleen Kennedy Tobin Bluebeard's CastleEvolve Company Mercy • Daniel Lang Foretopman • Chris Green Bioscopophilia • Valeska Populoh Professor Bluegill and His Harbor School of Fish

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TOY THEATER CABARET - Sunday June 6 at 8:00pm

Great Small Works (NYC)
Toy Theater of Terror as Usual
The company revives its 1990’s news-based serial with a brand-new episode torn from today’s headlines.

Dolly Wagglers (Minneapolis, MN)
The Woodchopper Opera
An operatic fairy tale addressing themes of appropriate technology, the environment and our culture’s impact on future generations, permeated with a luddite sensibility. Lindsay McCaw and Adam Cook

Howie Leifer  (NYC)
Captain Jack and the Mermaid
A tale of love, loss, forgiveness and redemption set in the era of the great sailing ships. 
Based on a song by Meg Davis.

Meredith Miller (Chicago)
The Abduction
(see above, Program 2 - and pic above!)

Alissa Hunnicutt (NYC)
Marry Me
Alissa is joined live by the downtown NYC bluegrass band, the Birdhive Boys,
performing a piece based on an uptempo Dolly Parton tune.Yeehaw!

Jamie Davis (NYC)
Sneak and Destroy
Based in a world not unlike our own. There are the good guys, the bad guys, and the ones you just don’t know about.

Quality Slippers Productions (Montreal/Toronto)
The Enthralling Story of Herculine Barbin
Bekky O’Neil presents the life, love and struggles of Adelaide Herculine Barbin, a 19th-century French intersex individual whose memoirs were discovered by Michel Foucault in the French Department of Public Hygiene. 


Wednesday June 9 at 7:30pm
Thursday June 10 at 7:30pm

Dan Hurlin (NYC) and Dan Froot (Los Angeles, CA) Who’s Hungry - West Hollywood
Produced and written by Dan Froot, designed and directed by Dan Hurlin, a triptych of short toy theater plays based on the life stories of three homeless residents of West Hollywood, California.

Marsian (Los Angeles, CA)
Growing Up Linda:  Fudgie’s Death
Table-top pop-up books are transformed into full-screen cinema in Haus of Marsian’s neo-noir tale of desperation and depravity surrounding the troubled life of an ice-cream heiress.

Concrete Temple Theatre (NYC)
Hudson to China
In the Bronx, the statue of Henry Hudson believes he has found a route to the mythical Orient. Elsewhere, a young man dreams of success by conquering what he fears (the Chinese economy), and an immigrant longs for home. Co-created by Renee Philippi and Carlo Adinolfi.Performers: Carlo Adinolfi, Diana Chang, Zdenko Slobodnik. Original music: Bob Goldberg.


Thursday June 10 at 10:00pm
Friday June 11 at 7:30pm

Clare Dolan (Glover, VT)
Lingua Franca
The story of a linguist, translating between an ambiguous interrogator and his equally ambiguous interviewee, the show explores how the irrepressible momentum of banal, everyday life is connected to larger questions of power and politics in our uncertain world. Music by Ralph Denzer.

Bread and Puppet Theater (Glover, VT)
Kennedy Assassination Recalled in the Year of the Empire 2010 with Reference to James Douglass’ JFK and the Unspeakable
From the masters of larger-than-life puppetry, an oversized toy theater production featuring cardboard military and a cardboard president enmeshed in cardboard events of historical proportions.

Kyle Loven (Seattle, WA)
A woman receives a magical letter that takes her on a fantastical journey to find a man she has never met. 

Open Eye Theatre (Minneapolis, MN)
Love, Go Figure
An adaptation of five cantos from the Epic Italian love poem Amore! Que Fregatura! by Maladetto Poetaccio (1269-1299). Performed by Michael Sommers and Elise Langer.

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Friday June 11 at 10:00pm
Saturday June 12 at 7:30pm

Lisa van Wambeck & Neil L. Coletta
Der Wundertisch
Special pre-show performance in the Museum.

Laura Heit (Los Angeles, CA)
Bureau of Small Requests- the 76 Departments of Tomorrow
A series of small toy theater shrines that invoke a sense of ritual, poetry, pathology and supplication to an individual hope or fear. Inspired by the Taoist Beijing Dongyue Temple. Ms. Heit is also performing a different show as part of Family Program 2

Great Small Works (NYC and Boston)
The History of the Haitian Revolution
A compressed look at the most important and little-known event of the Enlightenment: an epic history of slavery, revolt, and the idea of freedom emerging from the confluence of African, Creole, French, British, and American culture and power, and conveyed with 19th-century popular prints and hand-painted sets.

Modern Times Theater  (Hardwick, VT)
The Jolly Banker
Rose Friedman and Justin Lander present a flat cardboard Punch and Judy show, in which Punch encounters the banker, lawyer, police department, judge, congressman and God as he attempts to sort out his financial difficulties.

Dr. Neff’s Incredible Puppet Company (Monroeville NJ)
Rip Van Winkle
Ann and George Neff present an adaptation of the classic tale celebrating the magic of the Catskill Mountains, and liberation from tyranny of various sorts, by plan or by miraculous intervention. Original music by Joseph Mayes.

Brian Selznick (NYC)
In the Garden, for Eve - a Video
A video tribute to the late Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, starring Marcel Proust and Jane Austen. Music by David Serlin.


Saturday June 12 at 10:00pm
Sunday June 13 at 7:30pm

Shoddy Puppet Co. (Philadelphia, PA)
Fables of Flight and Falling
A girl with a stone tied round her belly, a scarecrow who's afraid of birds, and a mule who's been mistaken for a lady are the characters in an intertwining chronicle of parables about love and war and learning how to fly. Toy theater spun with picture storytelling in a rustic revolving stage built from a large umbrella.
The Cosmic Bicycle Theatre (NYC)
Clockwork Universalis - or - Marvels of the Universe
The inner workings of Time and Space as viewed through the dusty panes of an antique window. A 22-minute History of Creation.

Facto Teatro (Mexico City)
Panteón de Fiesta
A different view of the myths and traditions surrounding the Day of Dead, in which a common man faces death as Mexicans do, in celebration, in a cemetery of colors, music and joy. Performers: Alejandro Benítez, Mauricio Martinez, Mercedes Gómez and Gerardo Tamez.

Great Small Works  (NYC)
The White Pajamas - a Video
Created by Jenny Romaine in collaboration with Polish-Yiddish memory painter Mayer Kirshenblatt, this video project was commissioned by the Jewish Museum for Kirshenblatt’s exhibit, “They Called Me Mayer July: Painted Memories of a Jewish Childhood in Poland.”

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Saturday June 5 at 11:00am
Sunday June 6 at 11:00am

Papel Machete (San Juan, Puerto Rico)
Barrio Mangó Bajito
Using a comic book aesthetic and pop-up techniques, this workers' street and community theater collective tells a story about the contrast between the natural time cycle, where fruits take their time to grow, ripen and spoil, and the accelerated pace of consumption-oriented production and private property.

Spica Wobbe (NYC)
By simply unfolding a cardboard box, Open creates a transformative space where the concept of being open is explored.  The puppeteers' hand gestures link to a series of episodes exploring each sense.         

Ron Sopyla (Beacon, NY)
Shadow Screens
Using two tiny flashlights, a small carved cardboard storyboard, and a stage made of Tinkertoys, storyteller and puppeteer Ron Sopyla fills a theater with shadows and stories from around the world


Sunday June 13 at 11:00am
and 2:00pm

Laura Heit (Los Angeles)
Matchbox Circus
“The smallest, greatest, bravest, show in the world!” Audiences of all ages will delight in the magic and folly of matchstick sized puppets performing acts in this miniature circus.

Michael Romanyshyn (Somerville, MA)
Something Better…
In this contemporary retelling of the Grimms’ Bremen Town Musicians, two refugee musicians search for a home and have incredible adventures, taking you into the world of classic fairy tale and the true journals of their own lives.

Drama of Works (NYC)
How the Earth Got Its Color
(an Aztec Tale)
Follow Wind as he must find his place in the pantheon of Aztec gods and prove himself when the Lord of the Night entrusts him to save the Musicians of the Earth.

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Saturday June 5 at 2:00pm

Object Theater as Live Cinema
A conversation with members of Hotel Modern, moderated by Great Small Works' Mark Sussman (Assistant Professor of Theater, Concordia University).

Saturday June 12 at 4:30pm

Compressed Power of the Miniature: Large Ideas on Small Stages 
What exactly is the power of toy theater and why are people attracted to it?  What are the possibilities for such miniature spectacle in the 21st century?

Great Small Works' John Bell (Director of the Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry) leads a discussion with participants Claudia Orenstein, Associate Professor of Theatre at Hunter College; Morgan Fitzpatrick, Puppeteer and founder of Shoddy Puppet Company; Lucía Contreras Flores, Toy Theater collector from Spain; Laura Heit, Puppeteer and  Experimental Animation Program Co-Director, California Institute of the Arts

Symposia run approximately 90 minutes


Saturday June 12 at 1:00pm

Learn about the history and construction of toy theater stages and puppets, then create your own story—in a box!  All ages welcome. Adults $20, kids $10.


A retrospective of Great Small Works' news-based serial, "Toy Theater of Terror As Usual," will be on display at the Queens Museum as part of a new exhibit called "Curse of Bigness" curated by Larissa Harris. Opening May 16th and running until October. See for more information.


Fresh from classes with Great Small Works teaching artists, students from the High School of Arts and Business in Queens will present their original shows at the Queens Museum on Sunday, June 6th, and at St. Ann's Warehouse on Tuesday, June 8th. Imagine the tools of photomontage, and reflections on the daily news, in the hands of NYC youth!

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Great Small Works is: John Bell, Trudi Cohen, Stephen Kaplin, Jenny Romaine, Roberto Rossi, and Mark Sussman

Toy Theater Festival Staff: Technical Director: Billy Burns, Production Manager: Meghan Williams
Museum Associate: Emmy Bean, Museum Assistant: Stefano Brancato
Program Associates: Shawna Lucey, Lake Simons, Erin Orr
Lighting Design: Jeanette Yew; Stage Managers: Andrea Rideout, Jason Hicks
TTF2010 Illustration: Erica Harris; Festival Brochure & GSW Website Design: Sean-Michael Fleming

Great Small Works wishes to thank the following for their support: NY State Council on the Arts, NYC Dept. of Cultural Affairs, National Endowment for the Arts, Jim Henson Foundation, Emily Davie and Hoseph S. Kornfeld Foundation, Scherman Foundation, Mexican Cultural Institute, Consulate General of Spain, Mental Insight Foundation, St. Ann's Warehouse, One Arm Red

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