Bob Baker Marionette Theater Has New Home in Highland Park

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - The Bob Baker Marionette Theater has found a new home in the Highland Park neighborhood of Los Angeles, it was announced today.

The marionette company hopes to begin staging shows early this summer at the 10,000-square-foot location at 4949 York Blvd., which was built in the 1920s as a movie theater and most recently housed a Korean church, though the grand opening isn't scheduled until fall.

The building is 3,000 square feet bigger than the theater's company's former home, which will allow for growth in education and exhibition programs, according to BBMT officials who signed a 10-year lease for the York Boulevard location.

Bob Baker Marionette's home of 55 years, a cinder-block building at 1345 W. First St. in the Westlake community near downtown Los Angeles, was sold by the troupe's founder not long before his death in 2014 and is being developed into an apartment complex. The last puppet show staged at the location was on Nov. 23.

Since then, the Bob Baker Marionette Theater has entertained audiences with a residency of ``Bob Baker's Nutcracker'' at the Pasadena Playhouse,an interactive children's museum exhibit currently on view at Southern California Children's Museum, and pop-up performances at the Santa Monica Pier,Los Angeles State Historic Park and other locations across Los Angeles.

According to a statement released by the BBMT, ``ongoing partnerships in the new location will include film, music, conversation series, and explorations of the wide range of source material in the Bob Baker archive and collection. New marionette productions will also take center stage as the Bob Baker Marionette Theater continues to expand and explore the development and possibilities of this art form. Summer camps, workshops, and hands-on educational activities will expand to teach and invite Angelenos to learn firsthand about puppetry and the allied arts.''

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