Columbia College Chicago

Great Small Works

Residency Details


CCAP is proud to present another feature residency this year, Great Small Works out of Brooklyn, New York.  This one week residency from January 24th - 29th, is a part of the Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival will feature three performances in Columbia's Dance Center, a free workshop on Toy Theater & puppet making, a pop-up brass band performance and more! See below for more information:


Great Small Works revisits the work of radical 20th-century New York City puppeteers Zuni Maud and Yosl Cutler.  In a bilingual Yiddish-English play that uses Maud and Cutler's satirical puppet scripts and original graphics, together with Great Small Works' own puppets and projections, and appearances by demented dybbuks and Mae West, Muntergang is a meditation on historical models for changing power relationships.  Join us for three performances of Muntergang and Other Cheerful Downfall apart of the Chicago International Puppet Theatre Festival.

The Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago
1306 S. Michigan Ave
$20 tickets; $10 for students
Thursday, January 26th: 7pm
Friday, January 27th: 7pm
Saturday, January 28th: 7pm
75 minutes

For tickets visit:

Panel discussions, Workshops, and a Puppet Cabaret


Volkenburg Puppertry Symposium

MCA Chicago: Edlis Neeson Theatre
220 E. Chicago Ave
Sunday, January 22nd: 10AM - 12:45PM

John Bell of Great Small Works will be moderating 2 panel discussions at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago apart of The Ellen Van Volkenberg Puppetry Symposium which brings together practicing festival artists with scholars to consider the intersection of puppetry with other disciplines and ideas.

This symposium is free and open to the public.  For more information visit:

Toy Theater & Puppet Making Workshop

The Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago
1306 S. Michigan Ave
Wednesday, January 25th: Time TBD

Great Small Works will lead a 3-hour workshop in Toy Theater (also known as Paper Theater).  Through a light-hearted lecture by Great Small Works' own singing professor John Bell, participants will be introduced to the 19th-century history and both traditional and contemporary practice of Toy Theater.  They will be shown some basic techniques and materials.  And then, either alone or in groups of 2 or 3, they will create their own original toy theater pieces.  Workshop participants will discover the possibilities of this intimate parlor entertainment for telling the grandest of tales with the simplest of means! Anyone who would like to consider subject matter for their piece in advance of the workshop is encouraged to do so.  A song, a poem, a location, an anecdote, a political idea, a hero, a news item, what I ate for breakfast, what I saw walking to the supermarket - there are infinite possibilities.

To reserve your spot in the workshop email Paul Teruel at

Keep an eye on our social media pages for more information about the workshop and more ways you can participate in this residency.  You won't want to miss this opportunity to work closely with theater artist from NYC!

Great Small Works Brass Band

Pop-Up performances at Columbia College Chicago

Various times and locations in the South Loop

With a nod to New Orleans funk, European fanfare, Yiddish klezmer, improvisational jazz, and with backgrounds in Bread and Puppet Theater's large-scale street performances and the HONK! Festival of activist street bands, Great Small Works company members offer their own rag-tag brass band.  Suitable for attention-grabbing of all sorts, the band can play on street corners, in public meeting places, on stages, in cafes and cabarets, and in parades and marches.  It is acoustic (no electricity needed) and mobile (we can move while playing) and includes a range of musical skill from high-end professional to novice.

Nasty, Brutish & Short: A Puppet Cabaret

Links Hall: Studio B
3111 N. Western Ave

Friday, January 27th: 11pm

Great Small Works presents "Three Graces," a 15 minute performance with Big cantastoria banners and oversized costumes.  We invoke the graces of Harmony, Splendor and Strategy through Grace Paley, Grace Kelly, Grace Lee Boggs and Grace Jones.

Saturday, January 28th: 11pm

Great Small Works' Joe Therrien and Sam Wilson present "The Sirens of Titan by Kurt Vonnegut, Episode 47: Talfamadore".  About 8 minutes.

Description:  In this week's episode, Malachi Constant, the Space Wanderer, is told of the tragic end of civilization on the planet Tralfamadore by Salo, his new Tralfamadorian friend.  A warning fable told via illuminated cranky and shadow puppets.

For tickets visit:

More about this residency

This spring semester Urban Missions is presenting Great Small Works as a feature residency in partnership with the Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival and with support from the National Performance Network.  Columbia College Chicago students Dominique Pasqua, Bethany Flores, and Dewon Evans are coordinators for the residency.

For additional background information, call 312.369.8871 or email