Puppets in Partnership is a small participatory arts festival in Govan, Glasgow being held on the 14-16 June 2013. It is delivered by Govan Folk University in partnership with CRAN Theatre and local schools, community groups, and theatrical production companies.
The festival has performances suitable for all ages.

Why a puppet festival?

Masks, puppets, magic and performing objects are tools of transformation. They are a kind of seismograph of the consciousness that we have of ourselves and others. They are unique tools of empowerment and group collaboration; keys to cross-cultural and intercultural performance and the promotion of international peace, friendship and understanding. (Scottish Mask and Puppet Centre)

The art of puppetry has a long heritage and has often been used as a means of addressing and commenting on issues which ordinary people feel are important politically, spiritually and culturally. We are proud to present this festival in Govan, showcasing performances and puppets both from professionals and the local community.


As well as the anchor organisations involved in Govan Folk University and our partner CRAN Theatre, the festival includes involvement from author Jay Griffiths, Govan High Autism Unit, Pirie Park Primary School, Yugen Puppets, Little Branches Nursery, Penny Geggies, Gingerbread Puppets and Puppet State Theatre.

Puppetry is an excellent means by which participants can gain self confidence, social skills and work experience. Performing as a puppeteer within a group can also teach teamwork, self expression, creativity and craft skills.

Because of its tactile, visible, participatory nature it is also the ideal means of encouraging involvement and celebration. We also recognise the valuable role that convivial arts such as puppetry can play in encouraging the formation of healthy communities.


Often thought of as an art-form solely for children, puppetry actually has a very strong history of presenting argument and encouraging debate (often in a quite provocative, even ribald fashion). The Commedia del Arte plays passed influence back and forth with puppet theatre: Mr Punch is an obvious example of cross-fertilisation, being strongly related to the character Pulcinello. Mr Punch was originally a representative of the people who would prick pomposity, attack social injustice and corruption: often to the point that such shows were banned! Puppets themselves hold a great fascination and magic. They can be beautiful, grotesque, comic and evocative. Some are highly sophisticated, capable of a great range of expression and others can be as simple as a face drawn on the back of a wooden spoon. The Puppets in Partnership festival will be showcasing a wide variety of expressions of the art.


Puppets in Partnership 2013

Puppets in Partnership 2014

Jay Griffiths- Kith: The Riddle of the Childscape

Kith, the riddle of childscape (Jay Griffiths)