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Rainbow Puppets Headed to New York City

(December 2016)  Rainbow Puppets are headed for New York City... and Broadway Legend Carol Channing is providing a new song for the occasion.   On January 8, 2017, the team will appear at the American Museum of Natural History for two special performances created just for the event.  The program will celebrate prehistoric creatures of the deep while including a few dinosaurs, a wholly mammoth, and a few moments from the Ice Age.


Broadway Legend Carol Channing voices our new Octopus puppet... singing the original song "I Want My Arms Around You!"   The Octopus has survived since before recorded history... how appropriate that a living legend should provide the voice to this amazing creature.

Programs are at 2:00 pm and 4:00 pm and are included with the price of admission.

The American Museum of Natural History is one of the largest museums in the world.  The team will be performing under the giant whale model which hangs over the heads of patrons.  The museum is located in Central Park and was featured in the movie "Night in a Museum" which starred Rainbow's legendary voice performer Mickey Rooney.

For this performance, the team will also feature a 16 foot long plesiosaur which requires three puppeteers to operate.  He will be singing "Make a Big Splash."  In its day, the plesiosaur could grow up to 49 feet long... he certainly could make quite a splash.

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So Long Mickey!  Thanks for all the fun!

Rainbow statement about Mickey:

The Rainbow Puppets are saddened to learn of the loss of their supporter and friend Mickey Rooney.  The legendary entertainer died April 6, 2014 surrounded by members of his family.


“We send our prayers and warm thoughts to Mickey’s wife Jan and the entire family during this sad time.  It’s still very hard to believe… Mickey just kept going and going and going,” said Rainbow Productions founder David Messick.  “We will certainly miss him and will think of him often.”


Mickey Rooney’s career began in vaudeville with his parents.  He later transitioned to silent movies as the star of the kid comedy series where Mickey portrayed comic book character Mickey McGuire.  Mickey legally changed his name from Joe Yule, Jr. to Mickey McGuire.  The last name “Rooney” came later.  He transitioned to sound films and was not only successful… he was for a time the most profitable star in Hollywood.


He starred in series of musicals with Judy Garland, in “National Velvet” with Elizabeth Taylor.  His favorite film may have been “Boys Town.”  “I’d call to wish him happy birthday and he’d be busy watching he and Spencer Tracy in the film,” says Messick.  “I first saw him in the Broadway show ‘Sugar Babies’ in the 1980’s.  I said one day I want to work with him… and it really happened.”


Mickey joined the Rainbow Puppets in 2003 to star in the 100th anniversary production of “Babes in Toyland.”  “I imagined having the biggest, most heartwarming star in the world as the Master Toymaker… and only Mickey Rooney would do. Fortunately, his agent remembered meeting me earlier at a Mickey performance and they understood our mission to take professional productions to schools and to areas that might never see professional theater… and they agreed to help.”


“The day we recorded, Mickey had been up the night before with the travelling show he and his wife performed.  They also had a performance that night.  He came into the recording room and frankly, a person half his age would have been justified in being tired.  But no… we said ‘action’ and immediately… Mickey turned to the camera, became 30 years younger and said ‘Welcome to Toyland!’ just the way I had written it only better than I ever could have imagined.”


This was followed by productions of “Pirate Party” co-starring Carol Channing, “The Tortoise and the Hare,” and as Old King Cole telling tales like “The Three Little Pigs.”


“At the time of Mickey’s death, Rainbow was busy preparing yet another production featuring Mickey… “Jack and the Beanstalk” will be presented this summer… narrated and now in tribute to our friend Mickey Rooney.”


“But anyone who’s worked with Mickey knows… he was fast… let’s get this done in one take… let’s not sit around idle… and in that spirit there is yet another Rooney production on the way.  His last recorded performance for us will be “The Land of Oz” which he and his wife Jan also recorded for us.  We will miss recording and working with Mickey.  Fortunately, his work remains to delight and entertain generations to come.” 




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Last modified: 10.05.17