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Compagnie with Balls giant puppet performance at the 2019 festival

2019 Festival 

The 2019 Festival grew from seven days to nine days across indoor and outdoor venues in Newcastle. The festival kicked off with two days of free giant puppet walkabout performances on Northumberland Street, which was covered by the BBC. The festival programme included 2 UK premieres from Germany and Greece and the week closed with a ‘Puppetry for Children’ day in the Ouseburn.

“My first time watching a puppet show and I loved it! I would definitely come again.”

– Audience member, 2019 festival

As well as the main programme of shows, talks and workshops for adults and children, the second edition of the festival ran an Education Project with Northern School of Art students to introduce puppetry into the curriculum; a Community Project with Seven Stories and Equal Arts to teach North East practitioners about including puppetry in their outreach practices; a Digital Project with Newcastle University to merge coding and puppetry with service users at Gateshead Libraries; an internship for a North East-based emerging producer; two bursary places for North East emerging artists to attend puppet making and performance masterclasses; and the Moving Parts Scratch Space for artists to try out new work to get audience feedback.


Bell and Bullock Street Theatre, Chloe Rodham, Compagnie with Balls, David French, Drew Colby, Fiery Little T, Indigo Moon Theatre, Judith Hope Puppet Maker, Half a String, Headstrung Puppets, Helenandjohn, Henge, Hop Signor, Hopeful Monster Theatre, Jesse Ward Bubblologist, Life and Limb Puppets, Lost in the Fog, Merlin Puppet Theatre, Noisy Oyster, Odd Doll Puppetry, Offworld Dreamers, Paul Dewhurst, Pickled Image, Scottish Mask & Puppet Centre, Seb Mayer, Sian Kidd, Sokobauno Theatre, Stephen Mottram’s Animata, Strangeface, String Theatre, Tatwood Puppets, VIP Puppets, Vivify


Made possible through funding from Arts Council England and City of Dreams


Alphabetti Theatre, Circus Central, The Cluny, Equal Arts, Dance City, Magic Hat Cafe, Newcastle University, Northern School of Art, Ouseburn Farm, Seven Stories, Space Six

Take a look at the 2019 brochure

In the Press