Puppet Slam in Pittsburgh features marionettes, giant puppets and more | TribLIVE.com
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Puppet Slam in Pittsburgh features marionettes, giant puppets and more

JoAnne Klimovich Harrop
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JoAnne Klimovich Harrop | Tribune-Review
The Puppetry Guild of Pittsburgh is hosting its fourth annual Summer Family Puppet Slam on Aug. 17 at Workingmen’s Beneficial Union in Spring Hill. Peformers include (from left) Suzanne Werder of Millvale, Darlene Thompson of Sarver, Kirsten Ervin of Lawrenceville and Tom Sarver of Brighton Heights.
1539698_web1_PTR-PUPPETS
JoAnne Klimovich Harrop | Tribune-Review
The Puppetry Guild of Pittsburgh is hosting its fourth annual Summer Family Puppet Slam on Aug. 17 at Workingmen’s Beneficial Union in Spring Hill.

Colorful puppets will perform at the Puppetry Guild of Pittsburgh’s fourth annual Puppet Slam on Saturday at Workingmen’s Beneficial Union in Spring Hill on the North Side.

A puppet slam is a showcase of short, contemporary puppetry. The main performances will include marionettes, giant puppets, hand puppets and shadow puppets, according to Cheryl Capezzuti, an artist from Brighton Heights, a guild member and Puppet Slam chair. Capezzuti’s giant puppets have been featured at First Night Pittsburgh’s parade every New Year’s Eve.

The venue, which is also home to Spring Hill Brewing and Rescue Street Farms, includes an outdoor picnic area. The picnic and opportunity to dance with the Giant Puppet Dance Club begins at 6 p.m. The Asado Wood Fired Grill on Wheels will be open for food service, and Spring Hill Brewing will be selling its craft beer and TeaBoy non-alcoholic carbonated tea.

The show of nine acts is from 7 to 9 p.m.

Artist Kirsten Ervin of Lawrenceville will present her show “Hippies in Space,” where the puppets live in a place called Evergreen.

This will be the first performance at Puppet Slam for Suzanne Werder of Millvale, who will sing a song for her skit.

Tom Sarver of Brighton Heights, along with his wife Kristen, will showcase a puppet that is a farmer and is having a problem keeping bugs out of his lettuce. He said this show will offer a fresh selection of performances that includes a nice mix of styles and techniques.

“There is really a craft to puppetry,” said Sarver, an artist in several fields whose work has been widely exhibited. “The short skits will keep the audience engaged, especially the children. Kids love imagination. And we love that this is not a formal theater space. It allows us to break the fourth wall,” the imaginary wall that separates actors and actresses from the audience.

Darlene Thompson of Buffalo Township will perform two scenes from “Penelope’s Dragon,” a blonde-haired puppet with a tiara who is part of a fairy tale where she falls in love with a dragon.

Guests are invited to bring a favorite puppet to showcase at the event, which benefits the guild. The organization formed in the fall of 2015 and is working to produce more puppetry-related events in the region. It is affiliated with the national organization Puppeteers of America.

Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for children

JoAnne Klimovich Harrop is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact JoAnne at 412-320-7889, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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