A true Christmas miracle!
Just as the Bob Baker Marionette Theater was beginning to find its feet after a rocky period, the puppet theatre faced another detrimental hurdle: a pandemic. Restrictions forced it to draw its curtains with, it made a final plea to the community and managed to reach its fundraising goal of $365,000 at Christmas.
“We are so thrilled, so delighted, and simply awestruck to announce that, thanks to YOU, Bob Baker Marionette Theater has successfully reached our fundraising goal,” their announcement reads. According to the post, the funds were thanks to multiple donations from their campaign going viral.
Angelenos have grown up watching the vintage puppets take to the stage to deliver entertaining musical shows like Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker since it first opened in 1963. The donation will allow this Historic-Cultural Monument to keep its Highland Park venue open for the duration of 2021. However, the theatre will continue its fundraising efforts to enable programming and innovations to continue, ensuring the artistic legacy of the L.A. institution remains intact.
Since the lockdown went into place, new formats have been added to the mix, including Zoom puppet shows and traveling performances that take place out of the back of the truck. Peek-a-Boo exhibitions were also introduced, allowing guests to rent out the space for private events with a guided audio tour of the puppets and displays. With stricter measures in place, the company has had to put much of its planned programming on hold.
Donations are currently being accepted through PayPal, but fans can also be Patreons with exclusive access to content or join their adopt-a-puppet. Meanwhile, those looking to enjoy some marionette magic can head to Santa Monica Pier for the stunning “Window of Wonderment” exhibition, which showcases iconic characters and some of the “greatest shows on strings” in vivid window displays. It’s a charming outdoor holiday activity and it’s free to experience through January.
Featured Image: Bob Baker Marionette Theater via Facebook