For descriptions of the shows in the current Touring repertory, scroll down below the schedule.
SPRING/SUMMER EXHIBITION SCHEDULE
Thursday May 29th – October 11th.
“Speak Up! Speak Out! Bread & Puppet Theater”
University of Connecticut’s William Benton Museum of Art
in collaboration with the Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry
Preview reception: May 28, 4:30 to 7 pm
This exhibition focuses on Bread & Puppet’s activist responses to fundamental political and social issues that have defined American culture over the past 50 years, including the war in Vietnam; Central American turmoil and Liberation Theology; the politics of black liberation as represented by the Attica prison uprising and the M.O.V.E. family in Philadelphia; opposition to nuclear weapons and nuclear power; and the war in Iraq. Writing of Bread & Puppet, the poet Grace Paley asked, “Why not speak the truth directly? Just speak out! Speak up! Speak to! Why not?”
THERE IS NO TOURING SCHEDULE DURING THE SUMMER MONTHS. PLEASE SEE THE SUMMER SCHEDULE, BY CLICKING ON “SUMMER SCHEDULE” ON THE NAVIGATION BAR ABOVE, TO VIEW THE SUMMER PROGRAM OF PERFORMANCES AT THE BREAD & PUPPET FARM.
DESCRIPTIONS OF TOURING PRODUCTIONS:
FIRE was Originally created in 1965 and later dedicated to three Americans who immolated themselves in protest against the war in Vietnam. Fire is a glimpse into seven days in a Vietnamese community which is incinerated by firebombs, followed by a scene referencing the protest self-immolations. Fire is performed with life-sized puppets which resemble their manipulators. George Dennison, author, educator, and longtime observer of Bread & Puppet, said: “To some extent (Fire) is a service to the dead. Beyond this it manifests certain of the deep premises of the human condition, the inequitableness of life, our dependencies on each other, the social nature of the self.”
A Thing Done In A Seeing Place
A black and white puppet show which applies the problems of Sophocles’
Antigone to the now-situation and contains a few distorted quotes from the
The Lubberland National Dance Co.
Presents the Bombing Instead of Negotiating Dance in 5 chapters from basic
human truth relationship dances to the production of public opinion and
Captain Boycott is a show in 3 chapters:
1) A Thing Done In A Seeing Place – a modern re-telling of Antigone
2) The Horizontalists – the anti historic philosophy of horizontalisim, which casts light on historic events
3) Captain Boycott – the story of the boycot’s victory over the Captain who bears that name: Captain Charles Boycott, who in 1880 was pulled off his high horse by his own peasants and had his name removed from his self and repossessed and fitted to thousands of rebellions and protests. The issue is the endless re-occurrences of captainly oppression, whether military or economical. The title of the backdrop of this chapter, Men And Women With Sticks, refers to the 15th and 16th century precedents to captain Boycott: the peasant revolts in the Black Forest and The Upper Rhine Valleys.
The show will be performed in collaboration with Bread and Puppeteers and a large group of local volunteers.
The Nothing Is Not Ready Circus is for the not yet existing upriser masses and their kids who need to practice their upriser skills by teaming up with butterflies, cockroaches and elephants. Lions, horses and dogs are also employed to invent the correct rhythmical patterns that fight planetary destruction. The boot flags of the 15th century peasant revolution lead the way. Nothing Is Not Ready is the name of the show.
The Public Access Center for the Obvious Presents: The Situation
This upbeat puppet play features an anti-extinction angle, the union of brooms, a 100 watt light-bulb, and a ship of fools, all for the purpose of urging the not yet upriser-masses into existence.
Shatterer of Worlds Chapel with Naturalization Services for Applicants Requesting Citizenship in the Shattered World
A walkabout political puppet performance, enveloping audience and performers alike. At the moment when the first atomic bomb was dropped, Oppenheimer, the chief architect of that bomb, recalled words from the Bhagavad Gita, the Hindu prayer epic: “Life, the splendor of 1000 suns blazing all at once, resembling the exulted soul, is become Death, the shatterer of worlds.” In view of the latest failed earth summit and faced with the likelihood of multiple planetary shatterings, this sentence is reproduced by the Paper Maché Authorities in the Cathedral of Impermanence for your enlightenment and as a reminder of our possible predicament. The overt extrajudicial capabilities of the society system allow the shatterer of worlds to function legally to cultivate destructions so minute and gigantic, the eye cannot perceive and the mind cannot behold them. No politician, no hazardous substance, but a well-established tradition and demon strengthened by endless practices of devastation, the shatterer continues to plot the assassination of existence-as-it-is, while disguising his activities as benevolent maneuvers meant to cure the two ailing adversaries: the planet and humanity.
Link to representative “The Shatterer of Worlds” footage taken by Mark Dannenhauer: http://vimeo.com/75177278.
Birdcatcher in Hell
In 1971, inspired by the fresh green of the Cate Farm meadows, Peter Schumann was moved to make a show all in red, sculpting and painting dozens of masks, including a huge, intricately decorated “King of Hell.” The story came from an ancient Kyogen, a comic interlude in the Japanese Noh cycle. Schumann, together with poet Bob Nichols, had already created a “Birdcatcher” show in the mid sixties back in New York City. Strong political messages colored both versions: The bombardment of Vietnam civilians by US “observers” in the sky-blue 1960′s version, and President Nixon’s pardon of Lt. Calley, responsible for the My Lai massacre, in the later 1971 version. This show also included texts of slaughter and mayhem from the Iliad.
This year, Bread & Puppet presents a revival performance of this historic 1971 with members of the original cast from that time. Now, 42 years after the first performance, many of the original performers – Sue Bettman, Mark Dannenhauer, Marc Estrin, and Avram Patt – take part in the effort. B & P Press Printshop Manager, Lila Winstead, with community help, re-printed the many costumes and banners from the original masonite cuts.