Helen is a freelance designer, maker and director of puppetry for theatre and live performance. She trained at East 15 Acting School where she studied on the Contemporary Theatre and Acting BA (Hons). During her training she was introduced to puppetry performance by Stephan Mottram and subsequently began designing, making and directing puppetry for third year productions. It was at East 15 that she met long term collaborator and puppetry mentor Sean Garratt. After graduating, Helen worked as a puppeteer in children’s theatre.
Helen started working as a puppet maker with Blind Summit Theatre Company in 2011 where she created puppets for Le Rossignol at the Bregenz International Opera Festival and Citizen Puppet at the Edinburgh festival (fringe first award winner 2015)
As a puppet maker Helen has worked with the leading designers Mervyn Millar and Tracy Waller (Significant Object) for Circus 1903, Samuel Wyer for The Wizard of Oz, Jimmy Grimes for 101 Dalmations, Max Humphries for Dinosaur World Live, Jo Lakin and Mervyn Millar for The Lion The Witch and The Wardrobe.
Helen’s work as a designer and director of puppetry includes: Ben Crystal’s Dreame at the Ucheldre Centre, Wales; Seven Stages Shakespeare’s Hamlet in Portsmouth, New Hampshire USA; Passion in Practice’s Henry V at the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, Shakespeare’s Globe; Caliban and the Magick Booke at the British Library for their Shakespeare’s Birthday 2016 Celebrations; Finger in the Pies’ Moby Dick at the Greenwich Theatre.
Other credits include: Puppet and set design for Barmpot Theatres’ PenguinPig; puppet design for Snark the Musical’s Hunting The Snark, Pants on Fire’s Pinocchio at (the Pleasance) Edinburgh Fringe festival.
Helen has run puppetry workshops for children, adults and professional performers in London and around the world, including New Zealand, Japan, and the USA, and teaches regularly at East 15 Acting School.
Helen also works with long time collaborator Marie Fortune with their company Foan & Fortune.