At the age of 4 1/2, Ted left his house in Chappaqua, NY, and headed down the Saw Mill River Parkway toward New York City to join the circus. When discovered by local police, who knew him well, Ted was returned to his home by a vote of 4-3 with his mother abstaining. After countless hours in classrooms at The University of Tulsa, its College of Law and Harvard University, Ted was still focused on the circus - which explains why several of the current company of marionette manipulators were poached from Ringling Brothers. In an earlier life, Ted was the owner and publisher of weekly newspapers in New Hampshire, South Carolina and on the island of Nantucket, MA. He lives with his wife Beverly and his dog Typo on a quiet lake in New Hampshire and he has no spare time.



Roger joined the Company in December, 1991, straight from the University of Connecticut where he was studying for his Master's in Puppetry. He started designing the theatre and the first production, La Bohème immediately. Since then, he has designed and directed all of the theatre's productions and supervised the construction of all marionettes, costumes and sets. He also coordinated the construction of the company's traveling production including building the two large traveling bridges the company uses on the road. He says the only problem with fathering over 180 marionettes is remembering all of the birthdays.



Brian earned his BFA in theatre at the University of New Hampshire. While attending school, he garnered praise for his work as a playwright and an actor in semi-professional theater as well as establishing himself as an acclaimed children's performer. He joined the theatre in 1996 and has since participated in every show, either performing or constructing. On the side, Brian masquerades as a computer graphic artist.



Every successful marionette company needs a concert pianist on board to entertain the staff during those long hours backstage. Karen joined the company in 1995 for The Barber of Seville. She has since performed in Mozart's Magic Fantasy, La Bohème and Tosca. Karen and her husband founded The Dragon's Jewel Puppet Theater which specializes in fairy tales. The mother of two, she holds a Master of Music degree and teaches piano and Alexander Technique.



Rossini's Barber of Seville will never get a more entertaining Berta than when performed by Marsha who joined the theatre in May, 1995 to play that role. In addition to performing, she served as stage manager and took her stage managing and Berta role to the International Festival for the Arts in Bermuda on the company's first international tour in 1996. She has also performed many roles in Mozart's Magic Fantasy and in Madama Butterfly.



Melissa ducked out of Disney World and joined the New England Marionettes in the winter of 1998. She was given various backstage assignments in Mozart's Magic Fantasy, and was even allowed to touch a marionette for 12 seconds. She set her sights on becoming a member of the Boston cast for that show - which she achieved! - (and she progress to 34 seconds of stage time). She is quite proficient in American sign language, a skill which instantly endeared her to all of the cast of marionettes, all of whom claim they are proficient as well. A graduate of the University of Tennessee, she is a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist at a local rehabilitation center.



Before Dan entered the University of Connecticut to work toward his BFA in puppetry, he was already a professional manipulator with the company. Joining in 1993 to handle the role of Macduff in Verdi's Macbeth, Dan has since appeared in many productions and has often commuted back and forth from UConn in order to perform. When not burning up the highways, Dan is marching with the UConn Husky Marching Band.



Scott was imported from California to perform with the New England Marionette Opera. After his debut as Alcindoro in La Bohème, he has since performed as Melchior in Amahl and the Night Visitors, Suzuki in Madama Butterfly and Sciarrone in Tosca. He also served as stage manager for Mozart's Magic Fantasy. Away from the theatre, Scott enjoys trekking the back roads of New England and weeding his overgrown garden while lip-synching to Pavarotti.



Kelen had characters on our stage who were not to be crossed. In Macbeth she worked an assassin who appeared out the the dark and ruined an otherwise happy day for Banquo. In the next production, her character, Crown, skewered Robbins hardly 15 minutes after the curtain was pulled in Porgy and Bess. In an attempt to avert further mayhem, Kelen was given the philosopher Schaunard in LaBohème, and things settled down. This talented Pennsylvania native took a three year sabbatical but returned to join the Boston team handling the role of Sarah in Mozart's Magic Fantasy.



Lorraine ran away from the circus to join the Company in 1993. A graduate of Ringling Brothers Clown College, Lorraine is now an instructor at the New England Marionette Opera's Marionette College which is held twice annually for aspiring marionette manipulators. She has performed in every production the theatre has offered since her arrival and was a member of the 1996 international and North American tour. While touring she suddenly realized that is was easier to squish 20 marionettes into a Volkswagen rather than 20 clowns.



Trisha began at the theatre's inception in 1992 with her support in the control booth queuing up English language TransTitles for the company's signature production La Bohème. When she was replaced by a computer, Trish's talents were quickly shifted backstage where, as stage manager, her organizational skill glues the details of each production. She also hold the unofficial titles of Manager of Manipulator Morale (3M), and House Shrink.



Alana ignited her career as the stove in the company's inaugural production of La Bohème. Her task was to reach up from under the stage and snatch pieces of paper thrown into the stove by the marionettes on stage. "She was a natural" says theatre general director Ted Leach. She has continued with the company ever since and has performed in every production, touring company included. She has performed Marcello in La Bohème, Count Almaviva in The Barber of Seville, Amahl, and Cavaradossi in Tosca, (her first chance to die on stage). With such an intensive performing schedule, she still finds time to pursue a career in publishing and print production.



Mark is the principal and a teacher at the Stoddard (NH) Elementary school. Mark joined the Company in 1992 because he was 'looking for something different'. He immediately found it in the role of Musetta in La Bohème. He has since performed Goro in Madama Butterfly, Don Jose in Carmen, Macbeth in Macbeth, Amahl in Amahl and the Night Visitors, Figaro in The Barber of Seville, and Scarpia in Tosca. In his spare time he is completing his Masters in Education.



Diane is another person who ran away from the circus to join the theatre. A graduate of Ringling Brothers Clown College, Diane has also toured with a puppet company for seven months. She graduated from SUNY New Paltz where she was a visual arts major and minored in Dance. Her towering 5 ft. of height allows Diane to have the distinction of being the only manipulator who can have one of the theatre's chairs fold up on her while she is sitting in it.



During an interview for a theatre office position, Sharon became so animated in describing her past career that theatre General Director Ted Leach convinced her to try out as a marionette manipulator. The rest is history. Sharon has participated in numerous productions and was also a member of the Company's Cape Cod Touring Team in 1996. She shares her theatre experience with her two sons and is a former forester, a local environmental dowser and an earth science teacher who loves magic.



Marilyn arrived at the theatre the day the theatre was first announced. Sole proprietor of a graphics firm, Marilyn was retained to design the first brochure about the New England Marionette Opera. And, after reading it, she decided that the theatre would be a great place to work. She has done almost everything at the theatre including TransTitle projection, costume design, box office administration and, of course, manipulation - which she admits she loves the most. She now works full time for a large local printing concern and in her "spare" time, Marilyn cares for a cat, a horse and sheep, teaches and studies T'ai Chi, and runs a Reiki clinic.

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