Behind the scenes

The Salzburg Marionette Theatre employs 12 puppeteers, trained in a wide variety of trades and professions. Qualities common to all of them are musicality, manual skill, and the ability to emphathise with the various characters in order to bring alive the marionettes on the stage. The Salzburg Marionette Theatre has evolved its own technique, which is used as a model by many marionette theatres worldwide. The puppeteers' training, which takes place exclusively in the theatre itself, demands just as much time and perseverance as learning to play a musical instrument.

During the day, the puppeteers are busy in the theatre workshops. There is a tailor's workshop, where the marionettes are clothed and their costumes refurbished, a workshop for joinery and metalwork, where the scenery and stage-sets are built, and the workshop where the marionettes are made and maintained. The figures are designed by the stage director of the particular production; they are partly made in the theatre, partly carved by a sculptor. Marionettes are specially made for each production in the repertoire; they have no change of costume, a new figure being made for each costume. In any one production, between 20 and 90 different marionettes will appear on stage. Currently, some 500 puppets are "employed" at the Salzburg Marionette Theatre.

Besides the workshops there is a sizeable sound studio, where recordings are edited and adapted for each production. The lighting technician works with a computer-controlled lighting console to achieve the best possible illumination. In the miniature opera-house of the Salzburg marionettes, this contributes considerably to the illusion, allowing full scope to the audience's powers of imagination.

The Salzburg Marionette Theatre stages some 160 performances annually at home, and further 60–100 on tours worldwide. There is a travelling stage specially for tours; the puppets, properties, sets and scenery, together with sound and lighting equipment, make up some 4–5 tons of freight to be transported by road, air or sea.


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Salzburger Marionettentheater

Schwarzstraße 24, A 5020 Salzburg

T (+43 662) 87 24 06, F (+43 662) 88 21 41, M
Abgerufen am: 23.03.2018