Eli Presser, puppet master, works in local puppet productions and often does street work as here, in front of the Los Feliz movie theater on upper Vermont Ave. in Los Angeles
So says the description on YouTube of this last in my latest batch of posts drawn from wasting time on the famous video site.
As you’ve no doubt guessed, the background music to Presser’s puppetry is, in this instance, “St. James Infirmary” — a later Louis Armstrong version that’s very slow and mournful throughout. The video here is a bit shaky, there’s a false start at the beginning, and it sort of segues into a bunch of kind of random stuff (sideways angles, etc.) after “SJI” ends. But it’s a bit interesting just the same.
The puppet is bedraggled skeletal figure, who spends much of the performance crumpled and crawling in apparent grief and despondency. At one point, he nearly tumbles from the stage in agony. Pretty convincing! And kind of cool. I would suggest that the puppeteer use a small backdrop to block his lower body, so we can focus on his protagonist better. But what do I know about street puppetry? Nothing, friends. Nothing at all.