Meet Scottie Rowell, Puppet Designer & Builder for "Two Drink Minimum"

Posted on October 26, 2012

By Tracy Moore, Marketing Intern

 

Two Drink Minimum utilizes the puppets from the brains of not one but TWO excellent Puppet Designers: Michael Haverty & Scottie Rowell. 

Scottie took a minute to answer some questions for us about his work on Two Drink Minimum. He even shared some renderings! 

Thanks Scottie!  

 

Tell us about yourself & your work outside of Theatrical Outfit:
 
My name is Scottie Rowell. I work full time as a freelance puppet designer/builder. A majority of my work is designing and building puppet costumes for other builders and production companies in town. It makes for a fun career.
 
What kind of puppetry is being used for the show?
 
This production uses a few different styles: Tabletop Rod Puppetry, Overhead Shadow Puppetry, Halogen Silhouettes, and a little bit of Found Object Puppetry thrown in.
 
I designed and built the rod puppets; Michael Haverty is designing and building the overhead shadow puppets.
 
How does this puppetry differ from a more "traditional" use of puppets (with faces and bodies & dialogue):
 
Thanks for putting "traditional" in quotations, as it's extremely difficult to pin point what that is. One culture's traditional, is another culture's absurd.
 
This production's rod puppets are used for normal dialogue between each other, but are manipulated through obvert puppetry (meaning you see the puppeteers) which some audience members may not be used to.
 
Two Drink puppet 1
 
Tell us a little bit about your design concept:
 
The show's concept as a whole is Bill going through his mother's attic; the contents of the attic are used to portray Bill's memories. The tabletop puppets are designed to resemble forgotten, aged dolls that belonged to the family.
 
Is there a particular design you’re most excited about:
 
...Is it cheesy to say all of them?
 
As a designer it was exciting to make use of my childhood obsession with creepy dolls. And as a builder it was exciting to figure out how they would work like puppets, but look like traditional dolls. Not only do dolls lack the rods needed for manipulation, but they're also stiff with fairly restrictive clothing. It takes a lot of creative patterning for them to simply raise their arms above their head. If all goes well, the audience will think these dolls (that were slaved upon to work properly) were simply purchased.
 
What about this story lends itself to puppetry:
 
William Balzer's writing, based on real life, is so rich. Scott Warren is cleverly using his skills in directing and storytelling to make William's writing all the more impactful, hence the use of rod puppets, shadowy daydream sequences, and silhouettes. There are many ways to tackle a memory play like this; Scott has chosen to portray it through mediums that mimic the skewed, foggy nature of memory.
 
Two Drink Puppet 2
 
 
 
Two Drink Minimum opens this Saturday, October 27th. Opening night is SOLD OUT! But tickets are still available for the remainder of the run.
 
 
 

BUY TICKETS ONLINE or call 1.877.725.8849.