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The Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival Comes to Navy Pier

January 6, 2017

The biennial Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival presented by Blair Thomas & Co. returns to Chicago January 19-29, 2017! Navy Pier is thrilled to host The Festival Neighborhood Tour on Saturday, January 21, as part of a larger series of puppet shows spanning six locations across the city.

This year’s fest features some of the most prominent local, national and international performers in the industry – Schroeder Cherry, Interstate Arts and Magali Chouinard performing their works as well as leading workshops and presentations throughout the day. Families are invited to enjoy a full day of FREE entertainment, or drop in on workshops and performances as they please.


All performances are FREE and open to the public and take place Saturday, January 21st at 2:00 pm, 3:00 pm and 4:00 pm. No reservations are required.

The White Woman – Magali Chouinard brings thirty years of experience to the stage in this fascinating piece exploring solitude as a space where we can discover our true selves. Through silence and deliberate action, and by diverting from a linear narrative, this performance invites audiences to lose themselves in Chouinard’s poetic universe.

PLAY with your Food – This hilarious and bizarre performance, originally crafted by Detroit-based Interstate Arts, is a family-friendly experience featuring a vast, colorful lineup of puppets exploring the many ways we enjoy food! Audience members are encouraged to learn urban gardening, participate in cooking tutorials, and  “turnip the beet” with a veggie synth!

Underground Railroad, Not A Subway –  A moving and introspective performance directed by Schroeder Cherry centering around a young boy who escapes slavery and is running North to freedom. Along the way he meets many people that influence his fate, including free blacks, slave catchers and sympathetic whites. Featuring a wide variety of hand-crafted rod, hand and wooden puppets, this piece illustrates the complexity of race relations during the Civil War.

If you are interested in attending any additional performances, workshops, or lectures, please visit The Chicago Puppet Theater Festival website for venue locations, times and reservation information.

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