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Preview: New Orleans International Puppet Festival 

Will Coviello on the two-weekend puppet fest coming to Marigny Opera House and Mudlark Public Theatre

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In its third year, the Marigny Opera House and Mudlark Puppeteers' puppet festival has grown to international proportions. Italian puppeteer Remo Di Filippo presents the marionette show Hanging by a Thread. The festival features different types of puppets, including rod, shadow and large-scale puppets and there's a gallery of puppets on display at Marigny Opera House, including giant parade puppets and many of the puppets created by Panacea Theriac during her 2013 artist residency at the Contemporary Arts Center. The festival features general audience shows at the Marigny Opera House (7 p.m.-10 p.m.) and adults-only shows at the Mudlark Public Theatre (beginning at 10:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays), and each weekend features a different slate of shows. Visiting puppeteers and companies include Lydia Stein of Vermont's Bread and Puppet Theater, Portland, Ore.'s Puppetkabob and Night Shade, and North Carolina's Toybox Theatre and Cripps Puppets. The Mudlark Puppeteers adapted The Adventures of Puss in Boots to present with giant puppets at the festival and Harry Mayronne presents High-Strung Harry's International Marionette Cabaret. Mayronne has long had an interest in German playwright Bertold Brecht (and was the musical director for an award-winning 2010 production of The Threepenny Opera at AllWays Lounge & Theatre). Last year, Maryonne brought his Brecht marionette to Berlin, where he performed at a benefit concert also featuring punk rock veteran and actress Nina Hagen. At the festival, Mayronne's show features Brecht, Hagen and a new Edith Piaf marionette. If the international festival continues to grow, perhaps the actual Hagen will join puppet Hagen next year. Tickets $25 general admission, $15 students/seniors. — WLL COVIELLO


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