College of Arts and Sciences
Fine Arts Department

The Douglas Paasch Puppet Playhouse

  • Douglas Paasch was Seattle's preeminent puppeteer for more than twenty years, opening the imaginations of audiences through his ambition, versatility, and whimsy. This fall, Strawberry Theatre Workshop honors Paasch's legacy with a puppetry arts showcase at the Lee Center for the Arts at Seattle University. Including performances by regional puppet artists, The Douglas Paasch Puppet Playhouse exhibits brilliance in the craft of puppet design and manipulation, nurtures innovation in the use of puppets as storytellers, and playfully celebrates the gift of imagination, which Paasch so relished and inspired.

    "Moon Show 143" by Kyle Loven
    "The Snowflake Man" by Sarah Frechette
    "The Matchbox Shows" by Laura Heit
    "Nesting" by Torry Bend
    "Escape" by Reed Garber-Pearson
    "Punch and Judy" by Clay Martin
    "Denmark" by Signal Light Puppet Theatre

    All artists appear every night, Oct 3-6. With the exception of Laura Heit, who will substitute for Sarah Frechette one night only, Oct-4.

    Recommended for ages 12 and up.

    In her 2006 review of "Infinite Noir", Jen Graves of The Stranger, wrote, "It's nice to be asked to do some imagining in the theater."  She was praising designer/director Douglas Paasch, who passed away suddenly just two years later.

    Paasch was the puppet master of Seattle Children's Theatre for sixteen years, opening the imaginations of a generation of northwest young people.  He also relished in the opportunity to integrate his work into stories not specifically designed for children, or even for puppets.

    In addition to his work with SCT, Book-It, and Seattle Shakespeare Company, Paasch found an artistic home with Strawberry Theatre Workshop, where he collaborated with artistic director Greg Carter on "This Land: Woody Guthrie" and Thornton Wilder's "The Bridge of San Luis Rey". Carter also performed In Paasch's wordless puppet play "Infinite Noir". 

    The profound loss of Doug Paasch has never been memorialized in a way appropriate to Paasch's ambition or sense of whimsy. In 2012, Carter proposed that the most fitting tribute would be a regular exhibition of the excellence that Paasch relished and inspired: The Douglas Paasch Puppet Playhouse was born.

    "Do some imagining in the theater:" join us for a four-day festival showcasing the best in local puppetry, as we honor the great artistry and ambition of Douglas Paasch. 

    The Douglas Paasch Puppet Playhouse
    Opening Night: Thursday, October 3, 2013
    Venue: Lee Center for the Arts
    Address: 901 12th Ave (Seattle University)
    Run of Show: Thursday, October 3 Sunday, October 6
    Performance Times: Thu-Fri-Sat performances at 7:30pm, Sun at 2:00pm
    Ticket Prices: $25 General, $10 Students/Seniors
    Phone Sales: 1-800-838-3006
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    Founded in 2004 by Greg Carter, Strawberry Theatre Workshop is a professional theatre company dedicated to socially engaged work of the highest caliber.  Strawshop is a Stranger Genius Award winner, a four-time Seattle Times Footlight Award winner, and the only company to be nominated for a TPS Gregory Award for Outstanding Production every year since the program's inception in 2009.  Strawshop is one of three companies selected to manage the new 12th Avenue Arts, a center for theatre slated to open in October 2014.