Frequently called "one of North America's leading puppet theatres," Coad Canada Puppets was founded in 1966 by Arlyn and Luman Coad. During its forty-plus years, the company performed throughout North America as well as seventeen countries across Europe, the Middle East, South America, and the Pacific Rim. Nine of these international tours were sponsored by the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs.
The troupe won numerous major puppetry awards including Puppeteers of America President's Award, the Puppeteers of America Trustees Award, and First Prize at the 1977 International Festival of Puppet-Actors in Poland. The American Center of l'Union Internationale de la Marionnette awarded the Coads eight Citations of Excellence in the Art of Puppetry. In 2006 the Coads were inducted as Pioneer Members in the British Columbia Entertainment Hall of Fame.
For thirty-five years Coad Canada Puppets created a new half-hour, solo performer production which was toured for eight months to the elementary schools throughout British Columbia. As well, they were annually invited to participate in children's festivals across Canada.
They were frequent performers and lecturers at North American and international puppetry festivals and have taught their art at several universities. In 1987 they established Charlemagne Press to publish books on advanced level puppetry and related topics. Over twenty titles are currently available.
O Globo, one of Brazil's national newspapers reviewed the Coads' performance as "a play without words and of great universality it reflects the inquietudes of modern man. Beside the power of expression of the puppets and the technical precision of the manipulator, the most significant aspect of the show is its capacity of involving the public with emotion. Emotions which are caused by puppets; simple emotions but so powerful they manage to produce more vivid results than the ones obtained by many live actors."
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