Puppets at Cannon Beach Historical Society Exhibit
November 27, 1999 - February 15, 2000


The Cannon Beach Historical Society

Puppets & Cannon Beach?

Loaned to this exhibit by Pacific Northwest puppeteers, puppet companies, and private puppet collectors, the 200+ puppets here at The Cannon Beach Historical Society, in Cannon Beach Oregon are actually only a small sampling of all the puppets you will find in private and company collections, theatres, schools, hospitals, and galleries throughout the Northwest.

Some less fortunate puppets are locked away in attic or basement suitcases or trunks, patiently awaiting the day that someone once again brings them out, dusts them off, and breathes the magic into them that makes them come alive. For puppets, you see, have the magical quality of being both alive and not alive at the same time.

Born of the human imagination, puppets ask only that their creators make them move, and it is difficult to find a culture anywhere in the known world where puppets, in one form or another, did not exist and flourish. What we hope to show in this exhibit are the connections that exist between puppets from one culture or time, to another, and how these connections can be traced, not only to the Northwest and Oregon, but right here to Cannon Beach!

The Main Exhibit Room

- A coastal Clatsop Indian myth told by the contemporary Tears of Joy Theatre, using rod puppets originating centuries ago in Indonesia and Asia. - A Punch and Judy show by Cannon Beach artist and puppeteer, Chris Grant, that traces its history back along the Oregon Trail and across the Atlantic Ocean to Shakespeare’s England, then further back in time to the commedia del arte mask theatre of Italy.

- The Oregon Shadow Theatre performs a tale in Cannon Beach using shadow puppets heralding from the earliest ancient times in China, India and the far east.

- The Olde World Puppet Theatre using Marionettes or Dolls of Mary, which were first seen by European Knights traveling on the Crusades to the Holy Land.

- Traveling puppet companies and puppeteers crisscrossing Oregon and the Pacific Northwest bringing the first theatre and opera to early coastal settlements and later, puppet workshops conducted by Portland State University at the Coaster Theatre in Cannon Beach.

These are only a few of the historical threads that connect Cannon Beach to The Magic World of Puppets.

- The Curator and Museum Staff

The Fireplace

©2011 Olde World Puppet Theatre


The Blue marble takes you out to the Lobby Next Button