MEET THE PUPPETS
(Catch a photo above by clicking on it to see a full picture with caption)
Broken Puppets are all created for a very special purpose: To represent an aspect of the maker's personality, a specific symptom that the maker intends to externalise throughout the creative process, or to provide a means of communication between the puppeteer, the puppet and the audience. So our characters range from tiny finger puppets to enormous parade or walkabout characters. Some are very friendly and approachable, while some are dark and mysterious. Some emerge from the minds of the children we work with, some are created collaboratively by groups in our workshop sessions, some are made for use on screen and some for stage.
Every character is designed and built in our little workshop studio - which has now taken over the entire ground floor of Creative Director Clare's house! - and we build them as and when each production calls for them to come to life, using a vast array of different materials and techniques.
Of course, given that all our puppet makers have invisible disabilities, we have many physical challenges to overcome throughout the build process. For example, both Clare and Marie suffer greatly with their hands; Marie's struggling to move due to rheumatoid arthritis, and Clare's generally becoming uncooperative as her M.E interfere's with the neurological signals being sent between her brain and limbs. This can, understandably slow us down at times, and we are fortunate to have been able to hire in some helpers for the first time this year, thanks to funding from The Big Lottery, Drakes Foundation and Arts Council England.
If you would like to know more about how we make our puppets, or would like to get involved in the various creative chaos that happens in our studio, please get in touch, we'd love to hear from you!