2018 National Puppet Slam: Meet the Artists

For one weekend only, experience the beauty, ingenuity, and hilarity of original short-form puppetry by talented artists from across the United States during the National Puppet Slam! These contemporary pieces for adult audiences have been nominated by their respective slams and curated for an evening of short works that aspire to be as varied as the vast national network of independently produced puppetry slams it celebrates.

As we prepare for the 2018 National Puppet Slam, we want to introduce our audience to the artists who will be performing this year. Today, meet Nancy Aldrich, Kris Bluett-Woolen, Cherie Panek and Deb Scott, who will be performing their piece “Senior Moment.”


Meet Nancy Aldrich, Kris Bluett-Woolen, Cherie Panek and Deb Scott! This group of puppeteers’ paths converged through Tears of Joy Theater, in Portland Oregon. “Senior Moment” was the first piece they performed together. They are honored to be performing at this year’s National Puppet Slam.

Nancy is a performer, director, builder of puppets. She also adapts stories into scripts for the puppet stage. She has been a puppeteer for more than 35 years,  and has spent 15 years as the artistic director of Tears of Joy Theatre.

Kris has over 30 years of experience performing, and she is recognized for her movement and vocal skills. Puppet shows have taken her to Japan, Korea, Singapore, Taiwan and Hong Kong.

Cherie is a puppeteer, actor, director and creator of the piece “Senior Moment.” Having performed for more than 20 years, she is inspired by the nuanced intricacy of puppetry.  

Deb is an actor, writer and director. She had the honor of touring the show Tymoteusz Rymcimci, directed by internationally renowned puppet master Jan Wilkowski.

Synopsis: A Senior Moment is defined as a mental lapse due to old age and forgetfulness. What if that definition is mistaken and it’s something quite opposite? Accompany an elderly man on his daily walk to his favorite park bench where an unusual visitor unites him with his past.


The 2018 National Puppet Slam runs Aug. 31-Sept. 2, 2018, at the Center for Puppetry Arts for ages 18+. Tickets include admission to the Worlds of Puppetry Museum. Beer and wine will be for sale at the bar. Tickets are available here.