Puppetry

Matt Peiken | BPR News


It’s difficult to tell which is more unsettling, the memory Edwin Salas carries of his rape 30 years ago inside a Costa Rican museum or that the rape shaped him as an artist.

“The man closed the door in a little room with a collection of insect and began to hit me,” Salas recalled. “From there come from my first performance, in Italy, about a pedophilic relationship.”

Even more disturbing: That might not be the most traumatic episode in Salas’ life. Born in Mexico, Salas said he was just 3 years old when, as he later learned, his mother was kidnapped, tortured and murdered.

Matt Peiken | BPR News


Puppetry doesn’t quite contain everything Lisa Sturz puts into her art. She builds elaborate sets, writes detailed narratives and, for the biography of her grandfather, she spent a year painting a 25-foot backdrop that unfolds from the scrolls of an oversized Hebrew Torah.

“As a puppeteer, I could write the scripts, I could write the music, I could sing and build the costumes and characters and perform them,” Sturz said. “It was a way of combining all those interests rather than choose between them.”