GLOP (Glorious Ladies Of Puppetry)
Louise Gold featured as Ms Ladyfriend in GLOP Season 1.
Pam Arciero – Ms Field
Jennifer Barnheart – Lady Doctor
Leslie Carrara-Rudolph – Mary Baker
Doreen Davies – Paint
Alice Dinnean – Sensible One
Peggy Etra – Nurse
Genevieve “G” Flati – Hysterical One
Amyee Garcia – Wild Card One
Louise Gold – Ms Ladyfriend
Elizabeth Hara – Journalist
Cheri Vanden Heuvel – Lydia
Gwen Hollander – Singer
Morgana Ignis – Dying Patient
Donna Kimball – Chimp Reporter
Adrian Rose Leonard – Shadow Puppeteer
Alison Mork – Brush
Sarah Oh – Bean
Christine Papalexis – Scared One
Nicolette Santino – Candy
Colleen Smith – Wick
Haley Who – Shadow Puppetry Design
Michelle Zamora – Best Friend One
Creator, Producer and Director – Donna Kimball
Creator and Producer – Alice Dinnean
Creator, Producer and Writer – Colleen Smith
Editor – Rich Prince
Composer – Angela Parrish
Writer – Elizabeth Hara
Logo Designer – Bob Kimball
According to their own website, for years various lady puppeteers in film and television used to refer to themselves jokingly as “GLOP”, in 2020 with so many projects shut down Donna Kimball, Alice Dinnean, and, Colleen Smith,, decided to make GLOP into a reality, an international all female puppet group, who thanks to modern technology can literally work around the world, as all of them film from their respective hometowns.
Pam Arciero and Louise Gold were among the puppeteers who twenty years earlier performed at Jim Henson’s Memorial Service.
Pam Arciero, Alice Dinnean, and, Louise Gold have puppeteered on Sesame Street and Pam Arciero and Louise Gold may be on the albums Born To Add, Elmo’s Lowdown Hoedown, and possibly, The Count’s Countdown. Of course Leslie Carrara-Rudolph has also performed on Sesame Street (but does not seem to have been on it in the early 1990s credits)
Colleen Smith and Louise Gold had previously worked together (in person) on That Puppet Game Show.
Reviewof GLOP Season 1
by Emma Shane
Perhaps the most impressive thing about GLOP Season 1 is the innovative manner in which it was filmed internationally, with the aid of modern technology, and without any of the performers actually meeting in person. The best film and television puppetry has always embraced the use of new technologies, mixed in with old, and GLOP’s work absolutely embodies that. Of course the other very impressive thing about GLOP is its all female cast, which includes a number of incredibly experienced lady puppeteers some of whom are of very long standing indeed. Louise Gold is a particularly good example here, as her work goes right back to when “Green Screen” was still commonly known as Chromakey, when it was used on The Muppet Show!).
One of the funniest and best bits is Ms Ladyfriend’s little catchphrase “Now girls, what have I told you a Our Lady of the Veils Girl never does?” she acts that headmistressesy manner so well. I couldn’t quite figure out what the accent was she was using for it. It reminded me at first of Hortense the Rocking Horse in ‘The Secret Life Of Toys’, but then on reflection it also reminded me a little bit of Mrs DoAsYouWouldBeDoneBy in Jason Carr’s musical of The Waterbabies – perhaps she was trying to combine the two?
The writing, by Colleen Smith and Elizabeth Hara is mostly good. I thought episode 1 an episode 4 were the best, and episode 5 was rather fine if you like Grimm fables. I thought that episode 3 ‘The Lady Doctor’ might be considered somewhat poor taste, until on reflection I recollected a particular scene in Avenue Q, and also remembered a line Jim Henson said in the Of Muppets And Men Documentary about puppets being “an obviously toy creature” . I’m not sure I necessarily liked the Grand finale song in episode 6 about faking it. Nevertheless it was very well and very impressively performed. Louise Gold (as one might expect) set a high performance standard with the first verse, which the others followed up very well.
One thing which absolutely hit me between the eyes about GLOP, was the realisation that not one but two female characters on That Puppet Gameshow were very clearly based on notable lady puppeteers. On watching that programme I had almost immediately realised that Sports “Expert” Miss Taptackle just had to be Spitting Image’s original Puppet Captain. Now watching GLOP’s work, and reading up about the creative team behind it, I see that “Producer” Mancie must surely have been based on a lady who has gone on to become one of the instigators of GLOP, Colleen Smith. Of course it’s not really all that surprising, given exactly which puppeteers performed those respective characters.
GLOP Season 1 is also a good example of how sometimes good things, particularly in recognising the abilities of women, can came out of awful world situations, in this case a global pandemic. There are surely parallels in how the role and recognition of women’s abilities, in many areas, including the arts, was expanded during the two world wars. I was particularly reminded of a certain lyric from Unity Theatre song “But now the most hardboiled of you can hardly fail to see, That girls can pull their weight like men wherever girls are free” I think that song lyric would fit the GLOP rather well.
Links about GLOP
GLOP’s official website: http://glop.us/