Despite the ongoing challenges brought about by the coronavirus pandemic, we are delighted to bring the Puppet Animation Festival to audiences across the UK once again in 2021. This year’s festival will take place entirely online and will include digital puppet theatre, animated short films and creative family workshops for children between the ages of 0-12 and their families.

Although the programme will be presented digitally, we are still working in close partnership with venues across Scotland to deliver the festival, including Dundee Rep, The Brunton (Musselburgh), Harbour Arts Centre (Irvine), Dumfries and Galloway Arts, Beacon Arts Centre (Greenock) and Universal Hall (Findhorn).

This year’s programme features interactive Zoom performances and workshops as well as high-quality performance films, and offers something for children of every age to enjoy from their own homes. We are delighted to welcome the fantastic Theatre-Rites to Puppet Animation Festival for the first time with their performance film The Incredible Tale of Robot Boy, made in partnership with Schauspielhaus Bochum. Work from Scotland will include the world premiere of performance film Hopeful Monsters, an evolution story told through innovative puppetry, and the return of Ipdip Theatre with their new work Up and Down, an interactive online performance for children aged 0-5 and their grown-ups. Tessa Bide and Soap Soup Theatre bring to life the Oscar Wilde story The Selfish Giant in a performance film for younger children, and Jo Neary will present Stinky McFish and the World’s Worse Wish.

For the first time we will present two online programmes of animated independent shorts for young audiences, along with tutorials in animation for families to try at home. And there are other opportunities to create, with five different workshops you can book to get making your own puppets this Easter holidays.

Puppet Animation Festival is one of the most important annual events for puppetry in Scotland. Puppet Animation Scotland deliver the festival and help champion the art form in Scotland by creating substantial employment and professional development opportunities, providing a national platform to showcase new work from established and emerging Scottish theatre makers. Each year, we also programme productions created by puppeteers from the rest of the UK and, on occasion, from the rest of the world, encouraging collaboration and exchange among artists with a passion for puppetry.

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