Sandglass releases archival videos

PUTNEY — Sandglass Theater has created 25 productions since its founding in 1982. Most of these were recorded for archival purposes.

The local puppet theater company plans to release a few of the videos over the next few months, beginning with Isidor's Cheek, a family favorite by Ines Zeller Bass.

Some of the recordings are better than others, although none is even close to the quality of a good high-definition multi-camera shoot that would be used for broadcast today.

Nevertheless, these recordings offer a window into Sandglass's past for those who want to learn more about the arts organization's history and how its work has developed over the decades.

“We have decided to make a few of these available for online viewing,” co-founder Eric Bass said in a news release. “They are not meant to equal a live performance; rather they offer insight into where we have been and where we are going.”

The first recording is from the final performance of the show at the Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry in Storrs, Conn., in 2015 before Ines retired from performing for children.

“One day, something drives Isidor from his little grey existence.” So begins the song, which begins the story, which begins the adventure.

Isidor's rosy red cheek runs away and he must search around the world to find it again. His travels take him to a world of color and beauty, as well as loneliness and even danger.

Inspired by a German children's book, Isidor's Cheek won a citation of excellence from the international puppeteers' organization UNIMA in 1999.

The video rents for $4.99 for access for 24 hours.

Sandglass is also offering weekly puppet craft sessions for families livestreamed via its Facebook page every Thursday at 2 p.m.

Here, you can also find a number of “Quarantine Artbursts” and little insights into how the work continues at Sandglass Theater during the coronavirus pandemic.

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