Here at Dowtcha we believe in passing on skills and the empowering nature of making and performing. We started with a simple puppet making in the park about ten years ago and are now writing and presenting longer courses for specific groups.

We’ve developed a series of workshops and courses based around puppetry, carnival and community arts for a variety of clients and aim to expand that program as far as we possibly can. We hope in the not too distant future to set up a National Puppetry Centre in Cork to further that objective.

Davy Dummigan and Cliff Dolliver are both registered teachers and all our facilitators are Garda vetted and fully trained in our techniques and child protection policy.

Simple Rod Puppet

AVAILABLE ON REQUEST This is our most popular and enduring workshop. It’s the one we’ve been hosting regularly at festivals, parties and events for generations of children. We’ve taken it as far as Glastonbury Festival and as close as our local park. It’s a very simple workshop that works with individuals or groups, in a public or private context, and most importantly, every participant finishes the workshop with a character of their own unique creation, and that can be very special for all sorts of reasons. It’s also just the beginning of the fun! This versatile workshop designed for participants 5 years to adult, is suitable for parties, class rooms…

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Stop Motion Animation Workshops

DOWTCHA’s  Stop Motion Animation Workshop was launched at the FASTNET SHORT FILM FESTIVAL in Schull, Co. Cork in 2013 as a two day workshop for a group of 13. We ran an altered version in 2014 as a drop in workshop where participants booked a half an hour slot and were led through the process. That’s the format we’re currently using and the clip above is from the Cork Puppetry Festival 2014 and used the same process.

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AVAILABLE ON REQUEST Marionettes can be made with varying levels of complexity. This workshop is suitable for a secondary school project. It can be completed in a standard art room with minimal woodworking equipment, or in a woodwork room. Marionettes are often carved from wood, and although this is a highly specialised skill requiring particular equipment it is also possible to manufacture the more complex parts in alternative materials and carve some or all of the body and limbs to have a basic experience of wood carving and successful articulation. Further simplifications are also possible to make strung puppets from found objects. We can offer a number of versions of…

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Lightweight Head and Hand Puppet

Available on Request This workshop is developed for the leaving certificate puppetry project to be completed in a standard art room. It’s an innovative Dowtcha design that makes a large lightweight head with a direct control on moving jaw from inexpensive materials. It can be integrated into a variety of puppet styles; a head with hands controlled by rods (muppet style), a head on a shirt with human or gloved hands (like the Dolmio ads) giant or parade puppets. This workshop is designed for leaving certificate students, but can be adapted for slightly younger students or adult groups. A head is built from clay built around a corriboard jaw, the…

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Introduction to Puppetry and Puppet Play

AVAILABLE ON REQUEST This is a show and tell from the Dowtcha archives where we bring a range of puppets to your venue. It’s a great way to start a puppetry project and can be pitched at a variety of levels. We’ll come to you and demonstrate the basic types of puppets and how they work; rod puppets, glove puppets, hand and rod puppets, marionettes, shadows and parade puppets. While this is all very informative, the best part is we’ll let you play with them too! It can be varied to suit any audience and backed up with relevant support material; from power point presentations, to study notes or activity…

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Inter-Generational Puppetry Course

AVAILABLE ON REQUEST Cliff Dolliver and Davy Dummigan have developed a 10 to12 week workshop programme for inter-generational participants. This creative arts project facilitates inter-generational communication via the medium of story  telling and puppetry. It explores and encourages aural history, helps to develop a sense of place and of history, and promotes feelings of dignity, pride respect and purpose. Timely reminder of the enormous contribution the older person has makes to Irish society and highlights the potential for further initiatives in this regard. The project can cater for 16 participants at a time and costs €k2.5 to deliver per programme. The sequence of the sessions is: Intro and stories / story…

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