Czech Marionette Artists: Modern Day Masters
Puppetry as a form of entertainment has been around for thousands of years, and in the Czech Republic, marionette puppet theater has been an important form of story telling art since the early Middle Ages. Two modern day masters, Miroslav Trejtnar and Richard “Rici” Kuklík are keeping the tradition alive.
In addition to being a master woodcarver and marionette maker, Miroslav Trejtnar is a master puppeteer and teaches traditional marionette making and performance skills at his own workshop in the center of Prague. In 1999, Trejtnar founded KIDPRAHA, a company dedicated to designing and making traditional wooden toys, sculptures and puppets. Trejnter has received many awards for his work and he has been commissioned to design and make puppets for a variety of important productions. http://www.kidpraha.cz/index.html
Richard “Rici” Kuklík Rici was born in Prague in 1964, and is considered one of the last artisans of his type. In his studio in near the center of Prague, Rici and his team of skilled artisans (including his two daughters), bring to life both traditional and contemporary characters. Each marionette is hand cast, painted, assembled and decorated with fine lace, leather and cloth details.
Rici’s marionettes can be found prancing on stage at puppet theaters throughout the Czech Republic and are also available online: http://www.marionettes-rici.com/en/