For more information and workshop rates contact me directly by emailing amp (at) alexismacnab (dot) com


Gain experience constructing and performing various puppet types. Learn the fundamentals of movement, breath and thought in object performance. Work as an ensemble to bring your creations to life.

Topics Include:

  • Shadow Puppets
  • Rod Puppets
  • Hand Puppets
  • Traditional “Bunraku-style” Japanese Puppetry
  • Cloth and foam body “Bunraku-style” construction

Various workshops available. Additional time means more styles and iterations can be explored.

  • Half-Day Workshop (4 hours)
  • Full-Day (7-8 hours)
  • Weekend (2-3 days)
  • One Week (5-7 days)

Weekend and One-Week work- shops include cumulative perfor- mance devised by participants. All workshops include a brief historical overview, basic build and perfor- mance techniques, and a chance to explore materials and methods. No previous experience necessary!

Adaptation for Live Arts [for printable PDF click HERE]

“It is the task of the translator to release in his own language that pure language which is under the spell of another...”

- Walter Benajmin The Task of the Translator

Explore how to tell a story originating in one medium via the methods of another. Through physical and visual theater exercises, discussion and writing, practice translating story and image across disciplines.

Workshops can be short or long term depending on participants’ needs.

Weekend (2-3 days)

  • Investigate key themes and images in your source material for exploration.
  • Through improv, movement, writing and other exercises, develop performance sketches and create a structural outline.

One-Week (5-7 days)

  • Develop a rough draft or excerpt script/score.
  • Workshop sketches of your adaptation using exercises indented to excavate the essential and unique qualities of your source material.

One-Month (3-4 weeks)

  • All of the above, plus work toward a final performance to showcase your discoveries.

Site Specific Performance

In this creative workshop intensive:

  • Explore the storytelling power of the spaces around you.
  • Use theme, context, and composition techniques to reveal meaning in non-traditional performance spaces.
  • Discuss the distinction between site-specific and site-responsive work.
  • Practice ways to work with, and push against, your performance location.

Using techniques from the worlds of dance, theater, and performance art, participants will uncover the narrative power in their every day world.

Improvisational sketches help to reveal the unexpected. Explorations of vocal and physical engagement ensures the performance fits the space. We’ll also spend time discussing audience and performer accessibility, and diversity of approach.

Weekend, One-Week, and One-Month Workshops available.

Storytelling Toys

In this series of art and craft-based workshops, broaden your perspective and encourage play in design. Topics can be offered as one or two part sessions (3-4 hours each), allowing flexibility in depth and practice.

Topic 1 - Kaleidoscopes

Derived from the Greek “kalos” meaning beautiful and “eidos” meaning shape, the kaleidoscope has been fascinating viewers for two hundred years. Learn the art and science behind the process of creating your own “beautiful shape” viewer.

  • Session 1: Charm Box
  • Session 2: Shadow Wheel

Topic 2 - Camera Obscuras

Anancientandfascinatingtoolusedbyphysicists, painters, and camera enthusiasts, build your own camera obscura to illuminate the beautiful and strange in our everyday word.

  • Session 1: Mini Obscuras
  • Session 2: Larger Viewers

Topic 3 - Magazine Toy Theaters

Using found images and simple materials, let your imagination guide your exploration of the rich tradition of toy theater performance.

  • Session 1: Construct Your Theater and “Fly System”
  • Session 2: Create Multiple Sets and Characters
All levels welcome!