Thurs, Aug 30, 2018

The Dark Crystal Ball


The Jim Henson Company

Join us for the Great Conjunction!

Special Event - One Night Only!

Thurs, Aug 30, 2018

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Join us for an auspicious celebration of our new special exhibit Jim Henson’s The Dark Crystal: World of Myth and Magic. The evening will include celebrity guests, a costume contest, heavy hors d’oeuvres, beer and wine bar, and a New Year’s Eve-style countdown to the Great Conjunction! Guests are encouraged to wear Dark Crystal-inspired costumes or fantasy masquerade attire and masks. Tickets are limited. Ticket information is below.

Tickets for the 2018 Dark Crystal Ball will go on sale on Saturday, June 9, at 12 pm EDT.

There will be THREE ticket tiers available. 

General Admission:
General admission tickets are $175 and include access to the Ball, heavy hors d'oeuvres, and admission to the Worlds of Puppetry Museum and the Dark Crystal special exhibit, which opens to the public on August 31, meaning you’ll be among the first to see it! Beer and wine will be for sale at the bar.

VIP Tickets:
There will be 20 VIP tickets available for $300 each. VIP tickets grant admission one hour earlier at 6 pm and includes a cocktail hour with the celebrity guests and open beer and wine bar. VIP ticketholders will also receive a gift bag with exclusive items. (Cash bar during the Ball.)

Ultra-VIP Tickets:
Finally, for the Ultimate Dark Crystal Ball VIP Fan Experience, there will be two pairs of seats at the Skesksis Banquet Table! These packages will be up for auction, with a starting bid of $1,000 PER PAIR of tickets. These packages include entry to the VIP cocktail hour; reserved seating; an open beer and wine bar all night; and an Ultimate Fan gift bag with exclusive items. You will have a dedicated podling server to bring you bottomless food and drinks. You will also have one DJ song request for a spotlight dance with your companion. Bidding for these packages will open Friday, June 1 at 12 pm EDT and will close Friday, June 8, 11:59 pm EDT, and we will post a link when bidding is live.

Ages 18+
VIP Happy Hour: 6pm
General Admission: 7pm


Brian Henson Chairman, Board of Directors, The Jim Henson Company Director, Producer, Writer, Performer Brian Henson is Chairman of The Jim Henson Company and an award-winning director, producer and writer for film and television. He is also a technological innovator and skilled puppeteer.

Brian regularly joined his father Jim Henson on set when he was a child and by the time he was 17, he was working on projects like the marionettes in the complicated bicycle scene in The Great Muppet Caper, Brian became indispensable on the sets of his father’s productions. In May of 1983, Brian joined his dad on the production of The Muppets Take Manhattan. He was assigned to Faz Fazakas, often referred to as an electro-mechanical wizard, to help with special effects. Some of this involved radio controlled puppets and other animatronic techniques. He was also a performer, working the marionette rig for Scooter’s bicycle ride. Talented in both areas and interested in the work of his father’s Creature Shop, Brian kept an eye out for other opportunities in fantasy film work. In 1984, he moved to London to work on Return to Oz. The film was not a Henson production, and allowed Brian to assemble his own team of animatronic performers that worked with him on several projects, including Jim Henson’s fantasy classic Labyrinth. Brian served as puppet captain for the film while also performing the character Hoggle with Shari Weiser. Brian’s work both inside and outside the company during the 1980s allowed him to establish relationships on both the technical and performing sides of the business, giving him a strong foundation for his leadership role in the following decade.

Following the death of his father in 1990, Brian moved back to America to become the CEO of The Jim Henson Company. In 2009, he became Chairman of the company and his sister Lisa Henson became sole CEO.

Henson is currently directing and producing the feature film The Happytime Murders, starring Melissa McSCarthy. Previous credits include, Executive Producer on the television projects Farscape: The Peacekeeper Wars (which he also directed) and Jim Henson’s Jack and the Beanstalk: The Real Story (which he co-wrote and directed). He also directed Battleground, an Emmy Award-winning episode of Nightmares & Dreamscapes: From the Stories of Stephen King for TNT. Henson’s television producing credits include Bear in the Big Blue House, Gulliver’s Travels, Muppets Tonight and Dinosaurs. Henson’s long list of film credits includes The Great Muppet Caper, Return to Oz, Labyrinth, The Witches, Little Shop of Horrors, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, The Muppet Christmas Carol and Muppet Treasure Island.

Henson has also led the creative and technological innovations of the company, overseeing the groundbreaking work at Jim Henson’s Creature Shop, one of Hollywood’s pre-eminent character-building, digital and physical visual effects facilities. He was part of the team that first created and utilized the Henson Performance Control System, a powerful custom-based interface for puppeteers, which won an Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science Scientific and Engineering Award in 1992. He has also been leading the Shop’s work with its revolutionary puppeteer animation system, the Henson Digital Puppetry Studio. In 2009, he and his team were awarded a Primetime Emmy Award, Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, Outstanding Achievement in Engineering Development for this proprietary system that allows performers to puppeteer digital characters in real time.

Along with his many talents in performing, directing and technical innovation, Henson is a master at improvisational comedy. In 2005, he created Puppet Up! – Uncensored, a live puppet improvisational show starring the miscreant puppet troupe, which was named a top ten “Best Stage Show” by Entertainment Weekly and has toured comedy festivals in Aspen, Las Vegas, Edinburgh, New York and Australia and continues to play venues around the country.


Halle Stanford President of Television, The Jim Henson Company. A ten-time Emmy®-nominated children’s television producer, Halle Stanford leads the Company’s development and production of all television, home entertainment and digital media in animated and live-action formats. She is currently in production on the Netflix series The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance and the second season of Doozers, a CG-animated preschool series inspired by the wildly popular characters from the classic Henson series Fraggle Rock. Her recent preschool and children’s programming executive producer credits include the Netflix Original Word Party, the groundbreaking marine biology series Splash and Bubbles for PBS KIDS®, the Sprout animated series Dot., based on Randi Zuckerberg’s popular book, the Netflix Original preschool show Julie’s Greenroom, starring award-winning actress Julie Andrews.

Stanford’s award-winning credits also include Sid the Science Kid and Dinosaur Train, which currently air on PBS KIDS® in the U.S. and in multiple markets around the world, the live-action preschool series Hi Opie!, as well as the Emmy®-nominated preschool series Pajanimals airing daily on Sprout.

Additionally, she is also developing a new animated children’s television series based on the popular female action figures by IAmElemental and an untitled children’s series based on children’s books from Al Yankovic. Stanford co-authored a book series, Jim Henson’s Enchanted Sisters, a collection of fantastical comedy-adventure stories for girls published by Bloomsbury and currently in series development with Cyber Group Studios.

Stanford joined The Jim Henson Company in 1993 and has developed and produced many well-known properties for the company since that time. She holds Bachelor of Arts degrees in Film and Theater from Wesleyan University and lives in Los Angeles with her sons Max and Theo.


Kirk R. Thatcher is an Emmy award-winning writer/producer, as well as an award-winning television, commercial and web video director, and a creature maker and designer for both films and television. 

Kirk began at nineteen working at Industrial Light and Magic, creating and puppeteering creatures for blockbusters such as, Return of the Jedi, Star Trek II, Star Trek III, E.T., Poltergeist, and Gremlins. He was also an associate producer on Star Trek IV, in which he had a memorable cameo as the Punk on the Bus, rocking out to the Punk anthem he both wrote and sang, called, “I Hate You!” 

Kirk helped create the television series, Dinosaurs where he designed all the characters and Co-produced the series for 3 years. He co-wrote Muppet Treasure Island and has directed numerous Muppet films including three Muppet TV movies,  and a Life Time Thanksgiving special, Jim Henson’s Turkey Hollow. He has also directed over twenty Muppet commercials and web shorts including, Muppet’s Bohemian Rhapsody and all of Neil Patrick Harris’ web comedy series, Neil’s Puppet Dreams

More recently, Kirk was one of the three regular judges on the Syfy channel series, Jim Henson’s Creature Shop Challenge and just finished Executive producing a dark comedy/maker series for Netflix with the Henson company, debuting in late 2018. He is currently co-writing and co-directing the Muppet Live Shows that played at the Hollywood Bowl and in London’s O2 stadium. He loves tiki bars, espresso and has a pet Macaw named, Max.