Friday, September 21, 2012

From the PST Vault: Mary Churchill's "Three Little Pigs"

"The Three Little Pigs" by PST's Founder:

While getting ready for our upcoming performance of "The Three Little Pigs" by WonderSpark Puppets this weekend, I rememberd a conversation I had with Paul Vincent Davis, our Artist-In-Residence Emeritis about Mary Churchill's production of the same story. I was inspired to search deep into our old photos, and found three delightful images of Mary's beautiful show! Enjoy!

-Brenda Huggins, Communications Director

About Mary:

The Puppet Showplace Theatre (PST) was founded in June 1974 by visionary educator and puppeteer Mary Churchill. Mary saw puppetry as a powerful medium for teaching children, stimulating their creativity, and introducing them to the experience of live theatre.

One of the many shows she performed at PST was the story of the three little pigs! For almost 20 years, Mary performed this show with hand made puppets created in her signature, croche design. Families would enjoy a puppet show bill that included this story with two others; sometimes "Little Red-Riding Hood", or Aesop's tale of "The Lion and the Mouse."

Mary's Three Little Pigs:

In Mary's telling of this classic tale, there were not just three pigs in the story; the famous trio was joined by their mother. Four pigs! Mother pig had two sons, and one daughter. It was important to Mary, when adapting classic stories, to paint a picture of female characters in a stronger light, where they could have control over their own lives, and were not at the mercy of an evil witch, or married-off to a prince who she knew for about 2 hours.

 Mary's "Three Little Pigs" is a perfect example of this feminist twist to a classic tale, where the pig who build's a brick house is a girl pig, studying to become a dentist! How fun, and what a great message to little girls in the audience!

At the end of the show, the girl, soon-to-be-dentist-pig defeats the Wolf by pulling out his teeth! A famous line of the show spoken by the wolf: "That's O.K., they were just my baby teeth, and another set will grow in."

Mary's visionary work continues to inspire the staff and artists at PST, and we are so happy to share these beautiful images of her work from our archive!

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