Puppetry is a niche art form that involves the manipulation of various inanimate objects that become representations of characters, mythical creatures, animals and so and and are thus used to narrate a story creatively. Through the use of puppets, puppetry tries to express some of the most intrinsic human feelings and attempts to entertain and please audiences at large. Taking a different form in each country and region, puppetry has grown into a widely acclaimed form of theatre and expression and thus, over the years, several individuals have stood out, ones who have made the art of puppetry their passion. Mentioned below are the names of some puppeteers whose talent was unmatched and some puppets who have been beloved by audiences since the advent of this art form.
Famous Puppets –
- Pinocchio – Beloved by all, young and old, Pinocchio is a fairytale puppet that everybody associates themselves with. A little wooden puppet created by a woodcarver wishing to become a boy is the endearing story and then comes the audience’s favourite bit when Pinocchio lies and his nose becomes longer. A classic amongst children and adults alike.
- Punch and Judy – The eponymous leads of the ever famous tale and the puppet shows that have been portraying it since, Punch and Judy are the husband and wife duo that everybody watches with tears of mirth. With the incessant fights between the two characters, the tit for tat, the jokes and the silly quarrels, audiences love the drama and the comedy that Punch and Judy shows portray.
- Elmo – Everybody’s favourite little red Muppet character, Elmo is the star of the show, Sesame Street. A favourite amongst the younger audience, Elmo has been emulated into several puppet shows ever since he gained fame as a character and has since dominated the realm of puppetry.
Famous Puppeteers –
- Bill Baird – Perhaps the most noteworthy mention on this list, Bill Baird has been lauded for his art through the years, ever since the inception of his Baird Marionettes in 1934, his was the name that was associated with travelling puppet theatre, movies and television. One of his most popular and much loved performances was the song, ‘The Lonely Goatherd’ in the ‘Sound of Music’ wherein along with his wife, he put up a fantastic show that generations and generations have watched and rewatched together.
- Jim Henson and Frank Oz – This duo became a partnership because Frank Oz carried forward Jim Henson’s legacy. The man who brought Kermit and the Muppets to television, Henson created characters that audiences all over the world loved to watch and enjoyed spending their afternoons being glued to the television. After his stint, Frank Oz took this forward and operated all the characters created by Henson. Expanding the Muppets became one part of the process and it greatly increased to include other shows within the same banner. Frank Oz also went on to operate the puppet character for Yoda in three Star Wars movies and later on dubbed as Yoda’s voice in the movies that used CGI animation.