Island Puppetry Workshop 2023

Island Puppetry Workshop is a wonderful two-day intensive puppetry performance workshop run by Larrikin Puppets on Bribie Island in Queensland.

The next event is scheduled for June 17-18, 2023.

Target participants are adults and children aged 8+, aspiring puppeteers and professionals. 

Learn the basic techniques that bring Muppet-style puppet characters to life in an interactive workshop led by Brett Hansen and Elissa Jenkins.  

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Returning attendees from previous Island Puppetry Workshop weekends can use the opportunity to practice their skills and jam with rare access to specialty tools, equipment and other puppeteers. Due to the fact that puppeteers are spread so far and wide in Australia, opportunities to jam and practice together are rare.

This puppetry workshop is for both adults and children aged 8 and over. No previous puppetry experience needed. Students will get a chance to practice puppetry techniques using real puppets.

Children's Entertainment, Acting Classes, Theatre Courses, Drama Workshop | Puppet Show, Puppetry Workshops, Puppet Workshop, Puppetry Class, Puppet Class - Island Puppetry Workshop, Bribie Island, Muppet Course, Australia, QLD

Weekend Intensive Workshop:

Day 1: Puppetry for Stage, Saturday 17 June, 2023, 10am-4pm AEST (6 hours).

Day 2: Monitor Puppetry for Film & TV, Sunday 18 June, 2023, 10am-4pm AEST (6 hours).

Total 12 hours.

With 30 minute lunch break each day.
15 minute afternoon tea break each day. Lunch is provided both days. Vegetarian and meat sandwiches and/or wraps provided both days. Our apologies, we cannot accomodate any other dietary requirements.

Students learn lip sync, eye focus, walking, arm movement, emotion, character voices, and stage craft.

Each student is able to work with professional workshop puppets and will learn eye focus using little puppet “hand eyes”.

Students will learn the puppetry arts practice that informs:

  • TV shows like Sesame Street, The Muppets, Fraggle Rock and Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance.
  • Characters such Grogu from The Mandalorian, Bobby from Sweet Tooth, and Thing from Wednesday.
  • Stage puppets for theatre such as Avenue Q, Audrey II from Little Shop of Horrors, Olaf from Frozen The Musical, and the puppets from the Bluey stage show.

Location: Venue to be confirmed. Bribie Island, Queensland.

Tickets: Cost and ticket link available soon.

Why learn puppetry?
– Build confidence
– Improve communication
– Make people laugh
– Learn the skill behind the magic of Sesame Street and The Muppets
– Expand your drama/theatre portfolio
– Have fun!

Island Puppetry Workshop

On Day 1, students will learn about the manipulation techniques of Muppet-style puppetry for live performance including:

  • a short puppet show demonstrating how the puppets look when performed.
  • opportunity to view the short puppet show. from both the audience perspective and from backstage, watching the puppeteers in action.
  • an educational talk about different styles of puppetry.
  • an educational talk about Muppet-style puppetry and how the puppets work.
  • a hands-on puppetry performance workshop.
  • performances of skits from students to demonstrate what they have learnt, both in front of and behind the puppet theatre.
  • learn a group puppet dance choreography.

Exploring range of movements from puppet and puppeteer;
– Stance, eye focus, lip sync, breathing, puppet vibrato (singing), walking, hearing, arm rod manipulation (waving, scratching, covering mouth, high fives, etc.), emotions/gestures without dialogue, emotions/gestures with dialogue, dancing to rhythms while lip syncing to vocals.
– Proper entrances, proper height, left and right handed skills.
– Puppet assisting (two puppeteers working one puppet – rod puppets and right handing for ‘live hands’ puppets).
– Character building, voice acting and working with scripts.
– Character building on the spot – Improvised scenes.

On Day 2, students will learn the unique and challenging skill of monitor puppetry for Film and TV including:

  • a demonstration of monitor puppetry.
  • an explanation about “how” and “why” monitors are used for film and TV puppetry.
  • how to use a monitor to perform a puppet within a camera frame.
  • how to make a puppet seem real on camera using eye focus, walking and lip sync, all while keeping human/puppeteer heads and arms out of the shot.
  • how to frame a single puppet and work with more than one puppet in a frame, in conversation.
  • performing a group puppet dance choreography, recorded on video.
Larrikin Puppets Media Room - Puppetry Workshop Australia
High School Media Arts Incursion - Film And TV Monitor Puppetry Workshop

This interactive, practical workshop is led by professional film and television puppeteers Brett Hansen and Elissa Jenkins who were formally trained in the USA by Jim Henson puppeteers from Sesame Street and The Muppets.

Brett and Elissa regularly perform puppetry for television, music videos, corporate videos and online. Most industry professionals do not know what’s involved in filming puppetry for film and TV. It’s harder than it looks – and most people don’t know how it works!

Dinner by the ocean Saturday night at Sylvan Beach Seafood Cafe.
Attendance optional. Dinner and drinks will be pay your own way.
Fish ‘n’ chips and house made burgers, plus salads, in an easygoing venue overlooking the water. Licensed.
Meal prices range from $15 – $35.
Shop 4, 11-13, Marine Parade, Bellara, Bribie Island QLD 4507

Children's Entertainment, Acting Classes, Theatre Courses, Drama Workshop | Puppet Show, Puppetry Workshops, Puppet Workshop, Puppetry Class, Puppet Class - Island Puppetry Workshop, Bribie Island, Sylvan Beach, Bellara, Australia

About Bribie Island: Bribie Island is the only Moreton Bay island that you can drive to! It’s connected to the mainland by bridge and is only 45 minutes from Brisbane Airport. As you cross the Bribie Island bridge you have captivating views of Pumicestone Passage on both sides, and in the distance the majestic Glass House Mountains. Pumicestone Passage is home to an amazing array of wildlife – Dolphins, Dugong, and Turtles cruise the passage and over 300 species of birds visit the island each year roosting in trees and along the foreshore and feasting along the sand flats. Bribie Island is protected by Environmental, National and Marine Parks, 86% of Bribie Island will remain unchanged, ensuring the natural beauty will remain for future generations to enjoy.

Accomodation options on Bribie Island: Find places to stay, either on the calm side (Bellara, Bongaree, Banksia Beach), or the surf side (Woorim). Lastminute might be a good starting point –
And also AirBnB.