Artwork of Harry Burnett with Uncle Tom's Hebb'n puppet signed by artist, Ted Slater
Ted Salter Original Artwork, undated Ink on Board

Celebrating the Yale Puppeteers

Whether they were performing in New Hampshire barns, Michigan schoolrooms, or Hollywood theaters, the Yale Puppeteers usually made a lasting impression. Their unique brand of entertainment so delighted audiences that many would return time and again. Over the course of the trio’s long career, others would be inspired to honor the puppeteers in a variety of ways.

The whimsical nature of the performances at the Turnabout naturally lent themselves to caricature, and artists would often be inspired to put ink to paper with sketches and comics in tribute to the troupe. During the Turnabout’s heyday, local publications often reported on the theater and its performers, but national attention was also garnered in major publications like Harper’s Bazaar and Time magazine, the latter of which had a circulation of over 1.6 million at the time of publication.

Original Artwork of Elsa Lanchester, Dorothy Neumann, Harry Burnett, Lotte Goslar, and Forman Brown
Original Artwork, undated Ink on Paper

During their twilight years, Forman, Harry, and Roddy were often acknowledged for their lifelong cultural contributions and were the frequent recipients of achievement awards and commendations. Even after the Turnabout closed, the city of Los Angeles and the puppet community continued to show their appreciation for the Yale Puppeteers and acknowledged their contributions with awards and proclamations.

Los Angeles Guild of Puppetry Proclamation Certificate
Los Angeles Guild of Puppetry Proclamation,
1976 Ink on Paper
City of Los Angeles Certificate of Appreciation signed by Mayor Tom Bradley to Harry Burnett
City of Los Angeles Certificate of Appreciation signed by Mayor Tom Bradley, 1974 Ink on paper

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