April puppet events…

April is going to be a busy month for puppetry in Pittsburgh. Here are a few of of the events we know about:

FOR FAMILIES: Flying Fish at the Pittsburgh Fringe Festival, presented by guild member Darlene Thompson and her group Puppets in Performance. April 4th (7 PM), April 6th (5 PM) and April 7th (4 PM), Irma Freeman Center for Imagination. MORE INFO

FOR GUILD MEMBERS: Guild Quarterly Meeting, Wednesday, April 10th, 7 PM to 9 PM at Pittsburgh Center for the Arts & Media. At this meeting, we will primarily be discussing guild business and event planning.

FOR KARAOKE LOVERS: Guild member Dave English will be hosting Puppet Karaoke at Boom Concepts. April 10th, 6 PM – 9 PM. MORE INFO

BAR SCENE: Quintron and Miss Pussycat at SPIRIT, April 23rd, 10 PM. MORE INFO

LATE NIGHT CROWD: Diablerie or the Last Puppet Show, presented by guild member Murphi Cook at The Glitter Box. April 26th, 8 PM or April 27th, 8 PM. MORE INFO


Pics from Pittsburgh Day of Puppetry / World Puppetry Day 2019

Images captured at the Brillobox Puppet Happy Hour on March 21, 2019 by photographer Larry Rippel.


PGOP President Dave English Cohosted the Brillobox Happy Hour Event.


Guild members Veronica and Mallory taking part in Puppet Improv. 


Guests brought an antique Margo Lovelace puppet. 


The entrance of Cheryl Capezzuti’s Giant Puppet Dance Club.


An opening performance by guild member Joann Kielar.


Guild member Albert Pantone announces the development of a new show inspired by his travels to the Amazon.


Live music was provided by Unfinished Symphonies.


A visitor practices for her first time at Puppet Improv.


A Puppet Improve situation in progress. “Where is my lost cat?”


Guild member Tom Sarver cohosted the event.


Guild member Darlene Thompson performed a short act.


Veronica White and Darlene Thompson.


Tom Sarver with his trophy for the Puppet Boss competition.


Guild Members Kirsten Ervin and Katy Dement compete for the title of 2019 Puppet Boss.


Puppet Boss contestants where asked to create a puppet, following a diagram and utilizing a bag of crafting materials. They had ten minutes to complete the challenge. 


It’s a close call, but Katy is declared Puppet Boss.


Judy makes a stage appearance for Puppet Improv.

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Dave English performs his Henry David Thoreau Bot act. 


A guest tries her hand at Puppet Improv.


A buffet of puppets for everyone to use during their Puppet Improv Acts.


A wild and wacky episode of Puppet Improv.


A puppet creation by Dave English dances in the stage lights of the Brillobox.


Dave English and friends on stage for a magical moment with a Margo Lovelace puppet.


Mr. and Mrs. Funky on stage for a song.


Will Simmons ran the sound board and had some fun with the audience.


Puppet Dance Time!


Lost in the moment.


Stage antics.


An excellent first attempt at Puppet Improv.


Suzanne and Kirsten try Puppet Improv.


Guild member Albert Pantone with Puppet Improv.



2019 Pittsburgh & World Puppetry Day


Tom and Dave emceeing a Brillobox upstairs improv puppet event. All (21 and over) are welcome to attend the Thursday, March 21st 6 PM to 9 PM event. Participation is optional but encouraged. No puppetry experience necessary. 

Puppet Day in the ‘Burgh

Get ready to celebrate with puppet festivities all over the city

March 12, 2019—Thursday, March 21 is Pittsburgh Day of Puppetry and the Puppetry Guild of Pittsburgh wants everyone to take advantage of the puppet fun. The highlight of the day is Puppet Happy Hour at the Brillobox from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm featuring puppet improv and short works by Pittsburgh puppeteers.

Presented by the Puppetry Guild of Pittsburgh with the support of the Mayor’s Office of Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Day of Puppetry exists in coordination with UNIMA’s World Day of Puppetry on March 21st, 2019. On this day the puppeteers and puppetry enthusiasts of our city bond with counterparts worldwide to elevate, celebrate, and demonstrate the art of puppetry.

–  Dave English, President, Puppetry Guild of Pittsburgh

Check out these puppetry events in celebration of Pittsburgh Day of Puppetry:

Giant Puppet Fitness Class-California Cyclepath, a fitness studio in Brighton Heights, will host a giant puppet fitness class from 5:30 pm to 6:30 pm on March 21. In this free event participants will wear giant puppets while following along to dance fitness routines. Sign up: https://californiacyclepath.com/

Puppet Fun at the Sharpsburg Library-
Maker Monday Puppet-Making Extravaganza! Ages 5 and up on Monday March 18 at 4:30pm
Preschool Hands-On STEAM Storytime with puppet fun on Thursday March 21 10:00am
STEAM Play program featuring puppet-making and stories onSaturday March 23 1:00 am-1:00 pm

Comedy Night at J. Hicks on the Square– Ventriloquist Bob Rumba will be featured on Saturday, March 30 at 7:30 PM. For tickets call 724-622-1401.

Want to make your OWN celebration of World Puppetry Day? Using just a library card YOU can check a giant puppet out of the Braddock Carnegie Library and go celebrate as you see fit. Don’t forget to tag your puppet fun with #puppets4pgh.

Puppet Happy Hour This free, public event will feature puppet fun and games hosted by guild president Dave English as well as improvisational performances by guild members and puppet enthusiasts. Upstairs at The Brillobox,  4104 Penn Ave., Pittsburgh, PA 15224.

Display at Pittsburgh City-County Building

For the Month of March, coinciding with Pittsburgh Day of Puppetry on March 21st, the guild will have an interactive display at the City-County Building. The project is sponsored by the Mayor’s Office. Below are some pics. Stay tuned for our upcoming newsletter and information on Pittsburgh Day of Puppetry.

Puppetry Guild of Pittsburgh at city Hall

Stage by Alison Babusci. Puppets by Dave English and Joan Kielar.

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Hand puppet by Cheryl Capezzuti.


The City’s dog-in-residence, River, by Kristen Sarver.


A rod puppet by Tom Sarver. Guess what TV news celebrity this is?


Meeting Announcement!

The Puppetry Guild of Pittsburgh will hold its first meeting of 2019 on Wednesday, January 23rd from 7PM to 9PM at the Falk Lab School in Oakland (4060 Allequippa Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15261).

All are welcome to attend. We are always seeking new members. Professional puppeteers, educators and puppetry enthusiasts alike are welcome.

If you would like, bring a puppet to share for a PUPPET SHOW AND TELL activity.

Also on the agenda are:

  1. Electing new officers for 2019.
  2. Reviewing our 2018 successes.
  3. Planning for the March 21st National Day of Puppetry / Pittsburgh Day of Puppetry.
  4. Planning / Setting our 2019 schedule.


Felicia Cooper presents Porto Domi at New Hazlett Theater


Presented by New Hazlett as part of the Community Supported Art Performance Series

Thursday & Friday, December 6-7, Doors Open: 7PM, Show Begins: 8PM


This heartfelt, silly, and imaginative all-ages puppet show follows a young girl and her best friend, a garden snail, on a bus ride to find the meaning of home with the people they meet. Using large-scale marionettes, projection, shadow puppetry, and dance, Porto Domi explores adapting to unexpected situations and the joy of finding new friends.

A puppeteer, dancer, actor, educator, and maker. Felicia’s work is primarily centered around movement and gesture as a language for expression and the illustration of a human compulsion to find order in chaos through narrative complexities. She has completed artistic residencies with folkLAB, Bread & Puppet Theater, The Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, Pearl Arts Studios, and has been the recipient of a grant from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts.

Garage parking is available for $7 cash only

For more information on accessible seating or assistive listening devices please contact the New Hazlett Theater at 412-320-4610 or info@newhazletttheater.org

Fall News


The Imaginary Friends performing at the Annual Puppet Slam.

Halloween Puppet Slam

The guild is holding its first-ever Halloween Puppet Slam on Friday, October 19th at the Glitter Box Theater at 8 PM. Be advised: This show will include adult content! The night will feature over 13 freaky and frightful acts. Puppet Slams are informal productions where performers test out new content or practice new techniques. Tickets are $10 at the door. Glitter Box is located at 4690 Melwood Avenue, Pittsburgh 15213.

October 1 Meeting

On October 1st, a meeting was held at the Sharpsburg Public Library. Topics of discussion included electing new officers for 2019, planning for the Halloween Puppet Slam, planning a Holiday Party / Puppet Swap and organizing an exhibition for the 2019 World Day of Puppetry.


Albert Pantone received the Albert Pantone award for for his dedication at the Annual Puppet Slam.

3rd Annual Puppet Slam

The Guild’s third annual fundraising event and showcase took place August 17th in the Spring Hill neighborhood of Pittsburgh at the Workingman’s Beneficial Union, home of Spring Hill Brewing. The event began with an indoor picnic of potluck and food from the Gaucho Food Truck. Alison Babusci provided a Light Bright Beautiful Puppetry workshop. Cassidy and Charlotte held a bake sale of their homemade treats to benefit the guild. Performing for the first time were guild members Albert Pantone, Becky Spevak and Theresa Casciato. Seasoned performers on the main stage included Joann Kielar, Tom & Kristen Sarver, Cheryl Capezzuti’s Giant Puppet Dance Club, Felicia Cooper, Fuzzy Boundary Productions (Capezzuti with Kellee Van Aken), Dave English and Bob Rumba. English and Sarver served as emcees. The event was sponsored in part by KG Autoworks. The Imaginary Friends band provided live music throughout the night.

Puppet Pieces

On July 13th and 14th, Cheryl Capezzuti and Kellee Van Aken of Fuzzy Boundary Productions presented a retrospective of shows spanning the many years of their collaboration. The event took place at Glitter Box. Puppetry Guild of Pittsburgh sponsored the event and held happy hours before the shows.

Facebook Project

On June 25th, several guild members took part in the filming of a Facebook promotional video in Pittsburgh. A piece was filmed by an official Facebook production crew and is now available for viewing on the Guild’s Facebook Group site.