Last week I had the pleasure of adventuring to Atlanta, GA to do a little exploring with my family. We made sure to visit many of the more well known spots like the zoo and aquarium, but the place I loved the most was the Center for Puppetry Arts. This museum is filled with, as I’m sure you guessed, puppets. From Jim Henson favorites to pieces from Broadway shows and many old cultural puppets, there’s so much to see, do, and learn here. Although the main reason I wanted to visit was to check out the Labyrinth exhibit, I fell in love with the entire museum by the end of the day.
The Labyrinth Exhibit
From the moment you step into the Labyrinth exhibit, you feel like you’ve actually been transported to Jim Henson’s world. The lights are perfectly dimmed and you can ever so slightly hear the soundtrack playing. I got chills as soon as I walked through the door. This exhibit was filled with the magical wonder that Henson does best.
One of the first props I was greeted by was the friendly blue wall worm. He is one of my favorite characters from the film. I could hear his little ‘Allo and he is just as tiny and cute as I imagined. I was also thrilled to see Lancelot bear and the tiny stuffed Ludo that we see in Sarah’s room. They even have a plaster Hoggle head and the details on his face are just amazing.
Of all of the things I most wanted to see, the costumes and the crystal ball Jareth plays with were at the top of my list. In the back of the exhibit you can find these gems and they do not disappoint.
They have 2 ballroom dancer costumes on display. The attention to detail is just mind-blowing. The costumes are just so gorgeous and the masks are beautifully dark. I could’ve easily stared at these for hours taking in all of the details. Jareth’s costume from the M.C. Escher stair sequence is also in the exhibit. The stair sequence is absolutely brilliant and my favorite part of the entire movie, so seeing this costume was a bit surreal for me. First of all, can we just talk about how TINY Bowie’s legs were. I’m not even sure my arm would fit in his pant leg. I also am in love with his boots and the chest piece on this is just straight up amazing. Let’s just say I had my face pressed up to the glass case for quite some time examining this costume.
I’ve brought you a gift.
What is it?
It’s a crystal. Nothing more. But if you turn it this way and look into it, it will show you your dreams. But this is not a gift for an ordinary girl who takes care of a screaming baby.
I literally squeed when I saw these. Watching Jareth spin these crystals always entranced me as a kid. I did learn that it was never actually Bowie doing the crystal twirling. Juggler Michael Moschren actually performed the magic through an extra sleeve in Bowie’s coat. So essentially for take after take this guy got to hang out right up next to Bowie…swoon. Jim Henson also commissioned 18 special stands for crystal balls and presented them to the people who helped bring Labyrinth to fruition.
Jim Henson Exhibit
The Center for Puppetry Arts also had an extensive Jim Henson exhibit. I saw some pieces from The Dark Crystal, The Muppets, Fraggle Rock, and even Sesame Street.
The Dark Crystal totally freaked me out as a kid, but I loved it all the same. Jim Henson was a huge part of my childhood so this entire exhibit was really special for me.
The Labyrinth exhibit is on display until October 1, 2017, so if you’re in Atlanta at some point in the next month, you have to check it out. The Center for Puppetry Arts is a true gem and a must see museum. From a wide variety of puppets on display, to puppetry workshops, and even live performances, there is really something for everyone.