Phantom Limb’s 69˚S

These evocative marionettes were made for a new production called “69˚S.” by a New York puppet company called The Phantom Limb. This project has been in the works for a few years now and just a few days ago they got their last bit of funding.

I was excited to see this new work from them after hearing about this project from the artists who sat on a Henson Foundation panel I got to see in New York City last year. On the same trip I saw the Phantom Limb productionThe Devil You Know directed by Ping Cong.

I especially like the texture and detail in the costumes, it’s extraordinarily tricky to make fabric look like clothing at such a small scale. I love the sober expressions on the plainly formed heads. My first impression was that they were cut from blocks of gray styrofoam, then I thought maybe they were cast concrete. Now I’m convinced I have no idea what their made of, but I love their black eyes.

During the panel talk Jessica Grindstaff talked about the history of the company and how this project represented a lot of what they had learned from past productions. They got their start with some spectacular shows involving massive . She made special mention of the icebergs, and the creative thinking involved in creating the illusion of mass on stage.

Phantom Limb (Jessica Grindstaff & Erik Sanko, Co-Artistic Directors) is joined by an extraordinary team of multi-disciplinary collaborators. Synthesizing theater, dance, puppetry, photography, film, original contemporary music and an unconventional acoustic palette creating a stunning and evocative series of tableaux vivants that follows a group of gentlemen frozen (literally) in crisis.

Watch the video and you’ll see she solved the problem beautifully using fabric suspended from the fly. Stilt walking puppeteers are a bonus! Thanks to Taylor from the clown class for the link.


3 Comments so far. Comments are closed.
  1. Colleen,

    It is a puppet show!

  2. I wanna see the ones you made!