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History of Puppetry
in Canada

George and Elizabeth Merten

George Merten wrote several books on puppetry, two of which are considered classic reference books for puppeteers. With his wife Elizabeth, he created Merten Marionettes, which played two seasons at Onatrio's Stratford Shakespeare Festival, and performed extensively on Canadian television and in concert performances throughout southern Ontario. Elizabeth Merten also developed a number of shows with hand puppets, often assisted by Judith Lawrence, Nancy Cole or Nancy Kyle. George Merten was highly active in the Ontario Puppetry Association, the Puppeteers of America, and established both Theatre Ontario and Ontario Youth Theatre.

Adapted from Figuratively Speaking : Puppetry in Ontario by Ken McKay, copyright 1990. Courtesy of the Ontario Puppetry Association and Ken McKay.