logo DESIGN
 CONSULTANCY LEGOLAND WINDSOR

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We were consultants to Legoland Windsor in 1995 prior to the Park opening.

We came up with some innovative ideas for the Parks Puppet Show to playout traditional 'Fairy Stories' in a very contemporary style.

While having a background in West End Theatre Musicals we had no experience of traditional Puppet Theatre as such.
Our Puppet work being totally for Film and Television.
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Above right- First Prototype of 'Fairy Tale' Queen Puppet Head.
Below - Showing the basic animatronic lever controlled mouth and the handle.
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The handle is also used as the body trunk to mount the foam underbody and rodded arms.
First thoughts where that we should design/build a prototype to encompass and express our ideas for the puppets in the clearest and most practically way to LEGO.

That the Colour Palette should complement Lego's current Products in some way and also be Televisual. The new design helping to create a unified puppet look for all the varied characters.

The Design should draw on the traditional 'Fairy Tale' look while being completely up to date. The Puppets should appeal and appear warm and friendly to our very young audience.

That the Puppets would have lipsinc.

The Puppeteers for the Parks Show might not have a background in performing hand puppet lipsinc.

The entire Puppet Show would have to fit into a quite small Theatre Stage area.
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On the Right here is the design of puppet we arrived at for the 'people characters' using sculpted and dyed foam along with a fleece covering we had specially milled.

The sculpted hair and round red cheeks and lips helped the traditional 'fairy tale' look and the animatronic mouth set up made for ease of puppeteering and also formed a support for the body foam frame, arms and costume to be added later.

Below Right is Marcus's first sketch of how the Puppet Show Set might be devised to fit into the available stage area and yet create enough puppet acting area for several of the above designed puppets fully 'attired' to perform.
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The design also left enough room for the puppeteers to work below and three rows deep of performing area.
It may be a throwback to our Television background but we couldn't see how the puppeteers could accurately 'focus' (be looking in the right place ie. at one another) without a reference of the front audience view and so a camera and monitors were added.

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Our old friend, children's presenter Brian Cant wrote the first production script 'Emperors New Clothes.'

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production Soon the costume designs were done, the set constructed  and the Puppets were rolling off the propmaking Production line and the design proved to be a wonderfully aesthetic practical and robust success for LEGO.




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