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Monday, May 20, 2013

Puppetry Workshop with The Muppets' Peter Linz and Bear in the Big Blue Houses' Noel MacNeal

The Muppets' Peter Linz

Are you interested in learning what it takes to design, build and perform with puppets like those used in some of America’s most beloved productions like Sesame Street or The Muppet Show? Want to learn puppetry techniques from the professionals behind the characters?

The opportunity is yours!

The Workshop

Beyond the Sock is a workshop co-hosted by the University of North Texas Department of Radio, TV and Film and Department of Dance and Theatre. This four day intensive workshop will allow attendees to learn techniques for performing with "hand and rod" style puppets similar to those found in some of entertainment’s most endearing television series and films. Over the course of the workshop attendees will learn the vocal and physical techniques vital to creating compelling performances from two of the top names in the field.

Attendees will also learn character development, design and construction methods by participating in hands-on puppet crafting sessions where they can conceptualize and build their own basic puppet for use during the workshop. There will also be practical application of the skills learned through a culminating studio performance on the final day of the workshop. DVDs of this performance will be available to attendees for a nominal fee.

The Instructors

Peter Linz is a professional puppeteer who has performed in film, theatre and television using both handheld and full body puppets. Trained by the Jim Henson Company, some of Peter’s most familiar roles include Leo from the PBS series Between the Lions and Walter from the 2012 Disney film The Muppets and Muppets, Again. Linz has also been featured in Sesame Street and multiple Sesame Street specials. Linz has also performed as an ensemble member and understudy for the hit Broadway musical Avenue Q.

Noel MacNeal is an author, director and Henson-trained puppeteer with a long history of performing beloved film and television characters. His roles have included multiple characters from the well-known children’s programs such as Bear of Bear in the Big Blue House, Lionel of the PBS series Between the Lions multiple characters from Sesame Street. MacNeal has also performed in the Disney film Old Dogs and NBC’s hit series The Cosby Show and 30 Rock.

Pasha Romanowski is a professional puppet-builder, part-time puppeteer, and the founder of Project Puppet, a puppet-design and tutorial website. In addition to creating patterns and tutorials for thousands of aspiring puppet builders, Pasha's custom-designed puppets have been featured in various television and online programs in the U.S. as well as internationally. His puppets include the stars of Woot’s KidFoot! and Rufus of New Zealand’s children’s television series, Pop-Up.


The Details

Beyond The Sock workshop sessions will be co-hosted by the of the University Of North Texas Department of Radio, TV and Film and Department of Dance and Theatre. Through the combined efforts of both departments attendees will have access to spacious and well-equipped facilities for design, construction and performance. This includes a dedicated classroom theatre, and HD production studio spaces. As workshop coordinators faculty members James M. Martin (Senior Lecturer Dept. of Radio, TV and Film) Mario Tooch (Senior Lecturer Dept. of Dance and Theatre) and Adam Chamberlin (Assistant Professor Dept. of Dance and Theatre) will supervise sessions and serve as liaisons for attendees.

Registration - Open April 6 - May 15

Because of the unique nature of this workshop space is extremely limited and part time-attendance will not be possible. Onsite registration will not be available. Please see the registration link for online registration and payment and for details for payment by check.

Workshop Dates: May 29 - June 1, 2013
(8am to 6pm each day)

General Workshop Registration

Includes access to performance and construction sessions, puppet building materials and welcome reception.
Price: $1500.00 $1200.00

 to Sign Up NOW!!

         Student Workshop Registration

       Currently enrolled University Of North Texas students may
       contact James M. Martin or Mario Tooch regarding discounted
       student registration. (space is extremely limited)
Make checks payable to:
UNT Department of Radio, TV and Film

Mail check payments to:
BTS Workshop
Dept. of Radio, TV and Film
University Of North Texas
1155 Union Circle #310589
Denton, TX 76203-5017

UNT Alumni Workshop Registration

UNT alumni please use the contact form below for more information on discounted alumni registration. (space is extremely limited)

Location and Lodging

The UNT campus is also centrally located near numerous dining and lodging options within the city of Denton, Texas and is a short commute from both Dallas Love Field and Dallas-Fort Worth airports.
From Dallas-Love Field:
Turn Right onto West Mockingbird Lane
Turn right onto North Stemmons Freeway
Merge onto the ramp for Interstate 35E North
Take exit 466A toward McCormick Street
Merge onto Interstate 35 Frontage Road
Turn right onto McCormick Street and continue on Avenue A
Turn Right onto Eagle Drive
Take the second left onto South Welch Street.
Turn left at the fifth intersection onto West Mulberry Street
Make an immediate left turn into the parking lot.
Park at the far end of the parking lot.

From Dallas-Fort Worth Airport:
Take the Texas 114 West ramp
Continue left and merge onto International Parkway
Merge onto Texas 121 North
Exit onto Business Texas 121 North toward Lewisville
Turn left toward South Stemmons Freeway
Continue onto South Stemmons Freeway
Turn left onto the ramp for Interstate 35E N
Take exit 466A toward McCormick Street
Merge onto Interstate 35 Frontage Road
Turn right onto McCormick Street and continue on Avenue A
Turn Right onto Eagle Drive
Take the second left onto South Welch Street.
Turn left at the fifth intersection onto West Mulberry Street
Make an immediate left turn into the parking lot.
Park at the far end of the parking lot.


Discounted rates on lodging are available through the University of North Texas. Lodging includes breakfast made to order each day and transportation to and from the UNT campus. Please use the contact form below to request more information.

Workshop Coordinators

James M. Martin
Mr. Martin has worked in a variety of production environments including news, commercial and corporate production with stints as a news producer, technical director and production manager. In academic production he has directed and produced numerous university and community oriented programs including sports, performing arts and special events programming. With a specialty in editing, Mr. Martin also teaches courses in studio and field production, writing and various production workshops. He continues to write short films and is currently developing an online comedy series.
Mario Tooch
Mr. Tooch comes to UNT from The Shakespeare Theatre in Washington, DC, where he served as the Assistant Technical Director of a LORT B regional theatre under the artistic direction of Michael Kahn. Prior to the Shakespeare, Mario spent three years in the graduate program at the prestigious Yale School of Drama in the Department of Technical Design and Production. While attending Yale, Mario spent his summers working as an Assistant Technical Director at the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego, California. His undergraduate degree in Drama is from the Clair Trevor School of the Arts at the University of California at Irvine.
Adam Chamberlin
Mr. Chamberlin received a MFA in Theatrical Design from the University of Texas at Austin, and a BA from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. He is also currently the Director of Production for Amaranth Contemporary Dance, and Resident Lighting Designer and Technical Director for the Latin Ballet of Virginia. Previously, he was an Asst. Professor in the Dept. of Dance and Choreography at VCU, the resident lighting designer for One World Theatre in Austin, TX, for a variety of groups including The Cowboy Junkies, Little Feat, Jerry Jeff Walker, Stars of Maximum Dance, Tangokenisis, Dancescapes, and other opera, musical, and dance groups. In addition to his design work, he has previously been a high school teacher, been faculty for the Institute of Digital — Performing Arts (IDPA) and led workshops on conventional and intelligent lighting in the United Kingdom

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