Puppet Shows

Archived Q&A and Reviews

Sept 2013

RE: Halloween-themed entertainer for 5 year old party

Emily Butterfly entertained with puppets at a friend's child birthday party (turning 5) and was very creative and engaging. Her style is kind of goth, and I bet she can do a great Halloween show! https://www.facebook.com/pages/Emily-Butterfly-Productions/170015716376932 Mama 

Puppet show for 4 year olds birthday

August 2009

I would like to hire someone for a puppet show for my son's 4th year old birthday party. I checked the archives but recommendations are really old. I would appreciate if you let me know if you hired someone or watched someone and can recommend him/her. Suna

We had a most lovely puppeteer come to our 2 year old's birthday in July and he entertained all the kids, ranging from 2 to 11. I'm sure he'd be great for your party. Everyone raved about his act, Jungle Joe!!! His website is www.californiapuppets.com I want him at all my parties:-) Tipster Jina

Entertainer for 3rd birthday in home

Jan 2009

I'm looking for an entertainer for my daughters third birthday party which we will be having at home with a group of energetic 3-5 year olds. As I also have a 6 month old that needs my attention I am hoping to find somone who also leads the party activities and keeps things on track.

I would be happy to recommend Peter at P Puppets for your birthday party. We hired him at our son's 3rd birthday last year and everyone enjoyed it. He has several different shows to choose from (we did Pie-rats of Penn's Aunt), he was on time and gave the birthday child a treat at the end. website is http://www.ptpuppets.com/ Bryan in Oakland

Editor: recommendations were also received for Face Painters and Jugglers

Sept 2008

Hi there, I am looking for someone who performs puppet shows at residences for my son's upcoming 3rd birthday party. Also, wondering what the general price is for something like this. I saw some old information on this dated back to 2001 and 2003, but I was wondering if there is anything new. Thanks so much Elena

for a fabulous, creative and very funny puppet show contact puppets [at] jenmiriam.com and/or go to http://jenmiriam.com/puppets.html have fun! anon

I took my 3 year old twins (boy/girl) to a great puppet show this summer at the Piedmont Library (41st & Piedmont Avenue). I don't remember the puppeteer's name, but I am sure if you call the Piedmont Avenue library, they can give you her contact information. She was very funny, had great puppets, a great story and showed the kids the ''behind the scenes''. dms

Hi Elena. We used Peter from P Puppets for our son's 3rd birthday in February. He did a great show, Pie Rats of Penn's Aunt, a ''pirate'' themed show with songs. He setup in a corner while the party was going on. It was probably a 35 minute show, and my son got a pirate hat out of it too. I was taking pictures, and thought the show would lose young people halfway through, but they actually all sat enthralled and watched it. got good comments from other parents as well. He is from somewhere like Salinas, so he charges travel, but I think it was about $250 total. If you talk to him on the phone, he can help with the selection of shows, themes and times to fit your party. The site is http://www.ptpuppets.com/ Bryan

Puppetry classes for 7-year-old?

Dec 2007

I've been looking around for a class that might teach puppetry for a seven year old. My daughter enjoys putting on small plays at home and loves to make things, so puppets seemed like a good idea. But, I can't seem to find any classes being offered. I'm in the East Bay, but I'd be willing to travel... Any recommendations from the great wide pool of parental experience? andrea

PUPPETS AND PIE: Puppet-making classes for kids ages 6-12, in South Berkeley; maximum enrollment is 12 kids per session. Tuesdays, 3:30 pm to 5:30 pm., January through May. Teachers are two wonderful artists. For more details, see teacher Mary Ellen Hill's web site: http://www.mehstories.com/offerings1.html We first met Mary Ellen through my daughters' Oakland preschool, where she was an eagerly awaited monthly story teller, and now see her regularly through the girls' public elementary school. She's terrific. My older daughter did the Puppets and Pie summer program this past year and loved it. --Darcy

Puppet show for 4-year-old's birthday

June 2007

We are having a birthday party this summer for our daughter who will be turning four. Would anyone know of a person/group that comes to your home, set's up a puppet stage and does a show? Thanks so much! Sarah

Remember JoJo LaPlume from the Farmer's Market? Is she around? That was the most charming & whimsical thing I have ever seen in my entire life. It would be so great to get her for a party. (I think she taught sewing at the YMCA on the side.) Your post made me think of her. Wow. JoJo LaPlume danced on an incredibly charming suitcase stage (marionette) with little chairs set up for kids to sit & watch. The music was Klezmer or some crazy European accordian stuff and JoJo had the grooviest, wackyest moves ever!!!!! I would go to the Market just to see JoJo dance.

We loved attending a party with Peter Brizzi's puppet show as the entertainmnet, and followed by having him at our daughter's party. Peter is great, creative, and the children (and adults) all enjoy the show. He travels throughout the Bay Area. Se his websitef or more details: http://www.ptpuppets.com/ anon

Puppet show for birthday party

Feb 2007

I would like to get some info about puppeteers in the bay area who do birthday parties. I was hoping to have a short (20-30 minute) show in mid-March that is affordable. I know that's asking a lot, especially on such short notice, but it doesn't hurt to ask. I checked on the archives, but most of them seemed to be out of my price range. dawn

For a truly spectacular puppet show, contact the Piccolo Puppet Players, http://piccolopuppetplayers.com/, 510-663-7289 (Professor Brian Patterson). I haven't needed to hire them for a private party, so I can't attest to price, but I know Brian and some of the other Players from their years of performing Punch & Judy puppet shows at Dickens and Renaissance Faires. They put on a great show, and will dress in either Victorian or Renaissance costumes based on your wishes. I've seen young audiences of all ages and sizes (i.e. up to 80 kids!) enthralled by their performances. Since this isn't ''Faire season'' you may be able to book them on short notice, and it's usually just a two-person ensemble (the puppetteer, and the audience wrangler), so probably isn't too expensive, although you are paying for the transportation and maintenance of their many amazing props (and, of course, puppets!). Good luck to you! The children at your party will love it. Puppet Fan

Randal Metz, the puppeteer at Children's Fairyland, runs a puppet show program. I don't know the cost but you can try emailing him for a price. puppetcom [at] hotmail.com Good luck! programs [at] fairyland.org

A friend of mine who is a professional puppeteer recommends another puppeteer, Mary Ellen, for parties. Her site is http://mehstories.com Good luck! Bridget

Puppet show for 5-year-old's birthday party

Oct 2003

We would like to have a puppet show for our daughter 5th birthday party. By word of mouth I was given the name of Peter Brizzi from P puppets. Has anyone seen one of his shows and has a recommendation? DO you know of other puppet shows that you could recommend? Thank you.

A really good puppetmaster is Nick Barone. He does an excellent job, as he performed ''Puss and Boots'' for our school last year. The best part is the ''behind-the-scenes'' after the show. He removes the curtain, answers questoins, and shows the kids how the puppets work. It's amazing all that he does, considering he's just one person. You can even see his shows for free at some public libraries. His website is at www.nbpuppets.com Melanie

puppeteer/storyteller for 5-year-old's birthday party

April 2002

I am looking for entertainment for a 5-year old birthday party. I haven't done much research but does everyone charge $150 for 30-40 minutes of entertainment? Can you recommend a puppeteer/storyteller or other fun entertainment for five year olds that is less expensive? Thank you for any leads.

Call the drama departments in the local colleges and see if any of the students are available for less. You might be surprised at the talent that can be found there. Marianne

You can take a group of kids to Fairyland in Oakland and have a birthday party there in their private party space. They have wonderful puppet shows and other fun stuff to see and do. It used to cost about $10 a kid (may have gone up since the renovation) so it keeps the cost down. Christine

We saw a wonderful classic Punch and Judy show at the Dickens Fair this year. The kids absolutely loved it and interacted enthusiastically with the puppets. I don't know how much they would cost to hire but they are worth looking into. Be forwarned though that they do use slapstick and some parents may be sensitive to the rough play. Their web site is: http://www.misterpunch.com/ Donna

Puppeteer to put on a show for toddlers


Could anyone recommend a good puppeteer to put on a show for toddlers? (I've already checked the website--any new recommendations would be appreciated.) LawsonFmly

Linda Zittel does puppet shows andstory telling. I think she does private parties and works in schools. Her number is 234-6266. You can tell her that June Kamerling gave you her #. June

Snapdragon puppets is a one man show with a whole set and theater that he can bring with him. I've seen him the past several summers at Dimond Public Library doing his shows, and he's very funny, and very good. I don't know his phone number, but I expect you could get it from the children's librarian at Dimond. (I think he's going to be there 6/26, at the pajama story hour, 7:00 Tuesday, (free)

I'd like to second the recommendation for Roger Mara - Snapdragon Puppets. He brings his puppets to life brilliantly and also has great rapport with the children in the audience before and after the show. I've seen his shows quite a few times as my son is a puppet show devotee, and both of us enjoy them every time. His web site, which includes a calendar of public shows, is at: . We hired Snapdragon Puppets to perform at a 7-family combined birthday party (3 year olds) in April, and Roger did a great show. Another excellent puppeteer is Nick Barone. His web site is at: and includes a calendar of public shows too. Both of these guys perform at Oakland Public Libraries (and other libraries in the Bay Area), as well as Habitot, and the like. Go see them! Peter

Puppet theatre other than Children's Fairyland

Does anyone know of a puppet theatre in the Bay Area other than Children's Fairyland in Oakland? Thanks. Laura

Puppet Theater Folks: Madame Ovary 222-8684 Does an amazing child/adult puppet show using puns centered around eggs. All of her puppets are made from L'eggs panty hose containers and recycled materials from the EB Depot for Creative Reuse. She is my favorite of all time, funny and intelligent. Lisa

Piccolo Puppet Players 663-7289 Do a Punch & Judy type show. I have had them come to the Solano Stroll once since they are new to the area. I didn't catch their show but I did get a photo and it looked great. Nice folks. Brian & Heidi

The Oakland Public Library hires some wonderful puppeteers to perform at the various branches (though the wonderful guy who just did The Mousecracker during December is moving to Portland. What a shame.) You can check with any branch about upcoming puppet events. The quality is MUCH better than Children's Fairyland. Janet