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Brer Rabbit & Friends

Brer Rabbit & Friends
Photo © Center for Puppetry Arts

Adapted by Jon Ludwig
Directed by Spencer G. Stephens

2012-13 Family Series

Apr 11 - May 26, 2013
Previews: Apr 9 & 10 - 10am & 11:30am
Mainstage Theater
Recommended for ages 4+

•Tues-Fri: 10am & 11:30am
•Sat: 12pm & 2pm
•Sun: 1pm & 3pm

Live music and delightful stories about Brer Rabbit and his friends fill the stage. The fun begins as the gang gathers to sing an early morning ditty. But competition gets the best of them when the characters begin a battle for bragging rights. Who is the swiftest? The strongest? The smartest? Brains beat brawn when Brer Bear, Brer Fox, Brer Rabbit, and Sister Mud Turtle find themselves in a briar patch of trouble. So, join the whole gang for this fun-filled Southern romp.

Puppetry Style:

Hand-and-Rod, Rod, Body, Shadow

Create-A-Puppet Workshop:
Make your own Brer Bear Hand Puppet!

Bring your Brer Rabbit show program to The Wren’s Nest for FREE admission, limit 4.

Check our Special Offers page for more info and directions to The Wren's Nest!

Behind the Scenes of
Brer Rabbit & Friends

About the Story

The clever Brer Rabbit is a trickster character, first appearing in the early American South, and adapted from the oral traditions of the African trickster spider Anansi and the Native American trickster Hare.  Trickster tales appear in the folklore of cultures around the world and illustrate classic standoffs between the downtrodden and the powerful.

Having spent four years working on a plantation as a young man, newspaper reporter and folklorist Joel Chandler Harris, who made his home at the Wren's Nest in the West End neighborhood of Atlanta, grew up amongst the stories and the storytellers and recorded the tales of Brer Rabbit as he heard them told.  He collected the stories as a way to preserve these unique cultural traditions and gave voice to the African-American folklore movement.  In turn, director Spencer G. Stephens will bring these important folktales to life through song, dance, puppetry, and live original music based on African American traditions.

About the Style of Puppetry
Brer Rabbit & Friends comes to life with hand-and-rod puppets, shadow puppets and costume characters.  A puppeteer operates a hand-and-rod puppet by placing one hand inside the head of the puppet to turn the puppet’s head and open and close its mouth.  The puppeteer’s other hand operates the control rods attached to the puppet’s hands (or paws).  The shadow puppets in the show are projections of the 3D puppets, hand shadows and painted plexiglass. Character voices and animal sounds are all performed live by the cast. Each puppeteer wears a wireless Shure microphone to amplify his or her voice.

About the Performers

Dolph Amick (Brer Fox), musician and actor, is extremely happy to be in Brer Rabbit & Friends, performing these wonderful stories that he’s loved literally for as long as he can remember. Recent work includes composing the theme for Retroblasting ( and the score for The Tortoise, The Hare, and Other Aesop’s Fables (Center for Puppetry Arts); founding the AleCon Performing Arts Convention with his band, Three Quarter Ale; and performing as Professor Rhinoceros Beetle in Mighty Bug (Center for Puppetry Arts). He is currently recording an album with electronica/ ambient band burndollies, and narrating a thirteen-book series of Dungeons and Dragons works for ListenUp! Audiobooks. Special thanks to our hilarious cast and crew for keeping me laughing through rehearsals, to my glorious wife, Kara, and to my own sticky little baby, Valentine.

Jared Brodie (Brer Rabbit) is honored and thrilled to be making his debut at the Center for Puppetry Arts in this amazing and fun-filled show, Brer Rabbit & Friends. Originally starting at GA Perimeter, he finished earning his B.A. degree in theatre at Brenau University. He thanks God for the many blessings and opportunities, his family and friends for their love and support, and the patrons who continue to come out and support the arts. Thank you all and enjoy the show!

S. Renee Clark (Narrator/Pianist/Music Director) is thrilled to be back at the Center for Puppetry Arts. Her career spans across many genres of music including  touring Europe, the Middle East, and Africa for twelve years as a solo vocalist/pianist  Ms Clark’s theatrical credits include Horizon Theatre (Avenue Q—2011 Suzi Award for Outstanding Music Director, Madeline’s Christmas, Three Sistahs, The Thing About Men, Cafe Puttanesca);Theatrical Outfit (Big River--- 2009 Suzi Award for Outstanding Music Director, Gee’s Bend, Waiting To Be Invited, Ain’t Misbehavin’); Alliance Theatre (Jesus Christ Super Star Gospel, Jacques Brel); Theatre In The Square (His Eye Is On The Sparrow, Mahalia); Shakespeare Tavern (Hamlet: the Musical, Irma Vep, Cabaret); Center for Puppetry Arts (Brer Rabbit); The New Jomandi (Ain’t Misbehavin’); Youth Ensemble of Atlanta (Endangered Species, Colors of Love, Urban Holiday Soup); Jomandi Productions (Josephine Live, El Hajj Malik, Queen of the Blues, Dunbar’s Fantasy). She was the co-writer and composer of Travelin’ Black which premiered last year. Center for Puppetry Arts (Ruth and the Green BookBrer Rabbit); She was the co-writer and composer of Travelin’ Black. Big thanks to my daughter Lene and my mother for your love and support. But God gets all the glory.

Janeé Ann Smith (Sister Mud Turtle, Brer Buzzard, Baby Rabbit) is thrilled to join the Center in this production of Brer Rabbit & Friends. Janeé is fairly new to the Atlanta area having made her local debut in A Year with Frog and Toad with Synchronicity Theatre. She studied theatre at Wayne State University in her hometown, Detroit, MI. Past credits include A Song for Coretta, Doubt, The Bluest Eye, Pretty Fire and Anne of Green Gables to name a few. Janeé is also a vocalist and trained dancer with experience as a choreographer. When not performing, she loves teaching.

Tim Sweeney  (Brer Bear) is thrilled to be back for another Center production. Past Center performances include The Adventures of Mighty Bug, Rudolph the Red-Nosed ReindeerSpace!The Little Pirate MermaidPeter Pan, RumplestiltskinAladdinRainforest AdventuresCinderella Della Circus, and The Ghastly Dreadfuls. In addition, he has performed in various touring shows with Swazzle in California. 

Stage Manager

Gillian Wilson

Music composed by Bryan Mercer and Jo Banner
Musical arrangements by S. Renee Clark
Music direction by S. Renee Clark
Live music performed by S. Renee Clark and Company

Scenic Designer
Michael Stauffer

Sound Designer
Gregory Montague

Lighting Designers
Gregory Montague, Liz Lee

Costume Designer
Erik Teague

Puppet Design by

Jason von Hinezmeyer, Chris Brown, Chimera Productionss

Puppet Construction
Chris Brown, James Scottie Rowell, Amy Sweeney

Resident Puppet Builder
Jason von Hinezmeyer

Technical Director
Bill Jones

Master Electrician
Gregory Montague

Liz Lee

Artistic Associate
Michael Haverty

Puppet Builder
Stephanie McCoy

Assoc. Technical Director
Ryan Sbaratta

Resident Stage Manager
Gillian Wilson

Assoc. Producer

Kristin Haverty

Quick links:
Information on Group Rates & Field Trips
Group Rates for Schools & Educational Facilities
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Brer Rabbit & Friends sponsored in part by:

2012-13 Season sponsored in part by:

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Contact Us
Ticket Sales Office
Phone: 404.873.3391
Fax: 404.873.9907

Ticket Office Hours:
Mon-Fri: 9am-4:30pm
Sat: 9:30am-5pm
Sun: 12pm-5pm

Single show tickets, which include Create-A-Puppet Workshop and Museum:
Member - $9.25
Non-Member - $16.50

More information on ticket prices.

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