Overlap Course: Applied Puppetry. Derby, East Midlands. 4th October-6th November 2019


picking up a puppet and feeling confident enough to operate it for an audience. This is the aim of this Course whatever the puppet. What we want to do is to enable you to develop the skills to join the international family of puppeteers where shadow, rod puppetry and string puppetry overlap, and your working criteria is the benefit you can offer to your future participants in education, therapy, mental health and well-being.  

What you will discover in this course is that all puppets overlap whether shadow controlled by rods or strings, or the marionette performing as a shadow or that interesting overlap the rod-marionette. Huge rod shadow figures haunt the forest at Poet Laval festival.  Rod controls are the largest genre of puppetry from the most delicate Chinese shadow puppets to the enormous War Horse puppets.

The Course Work

is divided between solo, group work, tutorials and independent study. It is completely practical with making and performing. Coursework, includes the study of historical and traditional puppetry, more modern concepts such as table-top and theatre for one, and international styles such as three puppeteer operated puppets. We also include three  Japanese forms- otome bunraku, pape sart, and Japanese shadow.

Each student opts immediately for their speciality genre Students develop their skills of writing and creating original work for the puppeteer, puppet making and set design and building, running their own rehearsal process and audience studies when you perform to various audiences. This course is at professional level.  Specialist tutors will guide the puppeteers into their choices of application. 

The Course starts at the Skipton International Puppet Festival where you have the opportunity to see a large range of performances as well as receive the start of the tuition for the Course. Please book your own accommodation and tickets for shows. I CANNOT RECOMMEND THIS FESTIVAL ENOUGH BUT AS IT IS AN ADDITIONAL EXPENSE  IT IS OPTIONAL.


Making puppet under the tuition of expert puppeteers.

Learning to improvise, rehearse and perform with supportive colleagues.

Developing an understanding of the therapeutic and educational potential of your work.


Course Cost: 4 weeks £1,600.
Please note all fees are non-returnable.  Contact apply@londonschoolofpuppetry  to ask questions advisable prior to booking.
Fees cover tuition, use of tools, library and some materials. Fees do NOT cover, travel, accommodation, parking or food.

We have an accommodation list, please send for it. Accommodation available approximately £90.00 a week.


is a lovely Midlands City within easy reach of London. It is developing as a vibrant centre for theatre, puppetry and dance with collaborations between Derby University, Derby Theatre and Dédà and companies such as Maison Foo and Waxbaby Productions. Chester Green where the Course is located offers green space and quiet for intensive study.  

Comments from one of the Derby students

After performing the piece she made at London School of Puppetry, she said,

“I have had people asking when I will be out next ...I was high as a kite afterwards and had that lovely 'Derby feeling', yes there is a 'Derby-feeling' its the magic in the garden feeling! I am writing all this up to make sure I capture the progress I make. I am so heartened by what I saw and felt.”

See images below from Caroline Astell-Burt, Waxbaby Productions, Jhess Knight of Trash Puppets, Ted Adair, Lois Conlan, Travelling Shadow Theatre

All fees paid are non-returnable 

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Available dates

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