PuppetPalooza Grand Finale
By Robert Bernstein
PuppetPalooza happened at many places at many times around Santa Barbara.
Here are my photos and videos of the grand finale PuppetPalooza events at the former Macy's site at Paseo Nuevo!
As we arrived we saw these giant Mexican puppets exiting Paseo Nuevo and strolling down State Street
As this young woman posed with a bird unrelated to the puppets
As we entered Paseo Nuevo...
...we were greeted by this colorful giant puppet
We also met my friends Pali-X, Kimi Vandyk and Kent Epperson
Pali-X had several of his giant Solstice inflatable art pieces on display.
Polish Puppeteer Przemyslaw Grzadziela posed with Pali and me. He goes by the nickname Przemek.
I met him because he was sitting next to me at the Muppets event at the Marjorie Luke Theater two days earlier. Przemek was in Phoenix performing as a ballet dancer as well as doing puppetry. We were fortunate that he could come to PuppetPalooza while he was in the US! He performed non-stop doing puppetry, clowning, unicycling and stilt walking!
Here are several of his performances:
Dancing puppetry along with the wonderful Bay Area band Van Goat
Van Goat also performed the Star Wars Cantina song
Przemek clowned as an ill-fated motorist
He animated this lovely ballerina
He unicycled into the crowd and brought out a surprise
This giraffe and zebra couple were a huge hit
Stilt walking and dancing!
Plenty of other puppets and puppeteers
Cristina Stone brought her Shakesbears Theater all the way out from New York at her own expense!
Purple otters Pip and Pop in a bathtub
TV Legend John Palminteri was there in person and as a puppet!
He graciously posed with me
The Grand Finale of this Grand Finale was the Puppet Parade!
One of the big stars was the fire fighting dog created at one of the PuppetPalooza workshops. Here he is in the staging area before the parade
As Solstice Executive Director Robin Elander posed with the beautiful Solstice Birds created by Ann Chevrefils.
Then the Parade started! It was announced by Snook the Eco Sloth as people gathered. And it was led by the puppet making teacher Kathy Kim (on ukulele) who also led the puppet making workshops for PuppetPalooza with her husband Andrew Kim. They came all the way from England for these events!
Don't miss Puppet John Palminteri performing along with the other performers showing off in this and the following videos!
The Puppet Parade continued out the door of the former Macy's to Paseo Nuevo
Then it continued up State Street!
After a short cruise up State Street, the Parade looped back into Paseo Nuevo with Przemek leading the way with a stilt-walking puppet
And the giraffe-zebra pair following along with the Birds
Solstice artist Claire Frandsen proudly carried the lead pole of the magnificent bird she helped create at the PuppetPalooza workshop with Andrew and Kathy Kim
Claire had also been privileged to pose with Miss Piggy, Kermit the Frog and the other Muppets!
As the Puppet Parade wrapped up, other celebrants marched along
Mark your calendar for this event to return early next year. This is planned to be the First Annual PuppetPalooza!
Here http://puppetpaloozasb.com/ is their Web site.
And here https://www.facebook.com/Puppe