Arts Education

Arts Education Artists-in-Residence

The Midwest Trust Center welcomes Mesner Puppet Theater as the first Arts Education artists-in-residence.

3 members of the Mesner Puppet Theater

“Innovative storytelling that captures children’s imagination and inspires communities”.

Over the past 3 decades, the organization has captivated nearly two million people through our productions and educational programming. Audiences delight in the craftsmanship of the puppets, which range from glove puppets to marionettes, to innovative shadow and object based puppetry. MPT holds the distinction of receiving three Union Internationale de la Marionette (UNIMA-USA) Citations of Excellence. The UNIMA-USA award was created by Jim Henson to promote high quality puppetry in the United States and is considered the ‘Academy Award” of puppetry.

MPT uses humor and heart to present stories that connect to the complex social-emotional experiences of our young audience. Each year we engage more than 30,000 young people and adults in our programs.

As part of their residency, MPT will perform “The Snowy Day” December 4-5, 2021, and “In the Workshop – Live!” in May 2022. They will continue to offer their Educator Resource, “In the Workshop,” featuring webisodes for students, arts integrated lesson plans for educators, and much more, empowering educators to cultivate social-emotional skills through art, storytelling, and puppetry. This year MPT’s artist educators will also work with staff and students at the Hiersteiner Center at JCCC to support social-emotional learning.

The organization is currently led by Producing Artistic Director, Meghann Henry, Mike Horner, Director of Puppetry Arts, and Alex Espy, Director of Education. This team’s knowledge and experience in theatre for young audiences, puppetry, and arts integration is ensuring MPT’s history of excellence will continue while they evolve to meet and inspire today’s audiences.

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