On June 12th and 13th, 2015, I performed The Feeder, a short solo tabletop puppetry piece that explores the unintended consequences of a complicated relationship. The narrative is centered on the surviving partner of a gainer and feeder couple, who is on the run after accidentally feeding his spouse to death.I developed The Feeder during the 2015 National Puppetry Conference at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center with assistance from Ronnie Burkett, Sharon Challenger, Tim Lagasse, and Melissa Dunphy. My time at the O’Neill Theater Center was made possible with funding from the Los Angeles Guild of Puppetry, the Connecticut Guild of Puppetry, and the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center. There were a subsequent performances of The Feeder in 2016 at the Echo Theatre in Portland as part of Beady Little Eyes Puppet Slam.
Also as part of the Puppetry and Performance Program at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center were Zeb West with Science Catastrophe, Jim Kroupa with The Howdy Do Show, Gavin Cummins with J & M & G, Phillip Huber with marionette performances (by Michael Lamason, Annette Mateo, Travis Lope, Tim Lagasse, and Hua Hua Zhang), Juleen Murray-Shaw, Lyon Hill, Tim Lagasse with Video Anarchy pieces (by Katie McClenahan, Iain Gunn, Bridget Rountree, Janelle Weidlich, David Bizzaro, and Sarah Nolan), and Hugo and Inez.
The internationally-acclaimed Eugene O’Neill Theater Center is dedicated to encouraging and furthering the creative impulse which is at the heart of all theatrical expression – and the puppet arts are no exception. The mission of the National Puppetry Conference is to be a catalyst for the professional puppet artist’s growth and development through both the exploration of performance styles and skills, and the production of new works-in-progress for puppet theatre. The conference focuses on empowering puppet artists to create through the visual imagery and kinetic form of the puppet and enhancing their work through a collaborative dramaturgical process. The goal of the Conference is to encourage and create the highest quality of puppet art.