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Little Shop of Horrors Suggestions?  (Read 515 times)
illusionistpuppeteer
« on: July 16, 2017, 04:57:58 pm »

Hello! If any of you have performed the plants in Little Shop of Horrors before, I'm asking for some tips. We get the puppets tomorrow and it'll be kind of different because of how it controls. I'm worried it'll be a floppy-fabric one. Are there any suggestions on how to perform that or make it work more fluently? Also, we can add any changes to the puppets if we wish and we'd like to add a bar on the bottom jaw of pod number 3. Any suggestions on how to do so?
Shawn Sorrell
« Reply #1 on: July 17, 2017, 06:44:03 am »

Where are  you getting the puppets from?  Are they a rental?  It is hard to give advice on how to perhaps modify them without knowing how they where originally constructed. Normally any control for a puppet has to be tided into it's framework.  So for example simply gluing a bar in to the "skin" of a puppet might not work. Look inside and see if you can find the existing framework to tie into.
illusionistpuppeteer
« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2017, 03:17:15 pm »

So, I got to meet them first hand. It's no longer about renovations. It's more about fluency in performance, now. It has rubber skin for the most part. Kind of like the material balloons are made of. So, when I finally get to use them, I know it's going to be easier than a solid puppet, but also more difficult in its own ways because of the material. Any suggestions upon performing? Anything that I should follow to figure out the best method?
Shawn Sorrell
« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2017, 06:40:26 am »

Well again without knowing where the design of the puppets it is kind of hard to give you advice. If they are based on the original designs though one and two should be pretty straight forward hand in mouth puppets. Three is going to be manipulated with your hands over you head and your legs in two of the vines. Four is normally manipulated by levers and a rod you push down on to talk. Really the best advice is practice makes perfect. The same "rules" that apply to any other puppet apply here. You want to make sure that when Audrey is talking that they are looking at the other actor.  Ok I know that Audry does not have eyes but you still need to preform them as if they do. Don't have the mouth point up to the lights if they are talking to someone.

You'll be working blind and syncing with the actor who is voicing Audrey so it is important to listen to the director. Know those lines and if you can get some time with the actor you can practice syncing with them.
Dr Popet
« Reply #4 on: July 24, 2017, 07:34:52 pm »

Listen to Shawn, great advices!
illusionistpuppeteer
« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2017, 08:42:00 pm »

Thank you for the advice! Actually, I'm in quite a pickle, though. I finally got to work with the puppets for the first time today. And they're actually awfully constructed. They're floppy and don't work well at all. The lips are made of a foam rubber material. However, the problem is, the rods (made from pvc) feel like they're about to snap underneath the weight. They left me to find out how to fix up what was wrong with the puppet and I'm so overwhelmed. The puppet's inside has a lot of open space in the front of the nose, if that helps. However, the inside is filled with the same material as a poncho or a garbage bag... I also need to install a latch to keep the jaw closed while I sit idle for most of act I. Because I have to manually hold it shut, causing me to get shaky and more exerted. So, I was wondering if you'd be able to give advice, without having to take apart the framework, which is made from PVC and rubber, how to make it not be so floppy and to figure out how to add one of those latches? Or at least find a way for it to stay closed that won't exert me too much and that will help me keep it still? I appreciate all of your feedback. Thank you very much!
Shawn Sorrell
« Reply #6 on: July 25, 2017, 05:41:08 am »

Are we just talking about the largest Audrey? Without seeing images of the actual puppet is is kind of hard to give you guidance.

General ideas would be... we used bungee cords on the big guy to keep is mouth for the most part in the closed position... doubt there is really anything you can do about the pvc since it is structure but I wouldn't worry too much about it as long as  you don't get too carried away with manipulation. Pvc is pretty strong but does have flex in it.

Where are the people you rented this from? They should be able to give you some pointers.
illusionistpuppeteer
« Reply #7 on: July 25, 2017, 11:21:10 am »

It's actually pod 3. I'll send a picture later after rehearsal, today. These puppets were rented from a local theater that made it themselves and then gave it to a school to use, and since any other performances, it has been sitting in an old lady's basement for a while. These puppets are cheaply made and floppy as can be. I haven't gotten to use pod four, but I'll probably have questions. These are made very unorthodox because they're made of like...a rubber and lined with trash bag-material on the inside. I was considering putting a rope around the bars inside to hold it shut during the idle time, but I'm not sure if that's such a good idea.
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