NEW TO GIGMASTERS! Deborah Costine is a National-Award winning Professional Puppeteer with over 30 years experience of presenting high quality puppet shows for birthday parties, libraries, and hundreds of elementary schools throughout New England. She is approved by the Massachusetts Cultural Council and the New England States Touring roster. She has been selected for grant funding by the Jim Henson Foundation.
Deborah has the distinction of receiving the prestigious UNIMA USA Citation for Excellence for her solo production “A Woodland Cinderella.” Her own variation of the classic story, Debbie designed, built, produced and performs this entirely. She was invited to perform this at a Puppeteers of America Festival at the University of Maryland and at the Center for Puppetry Arts in Atlanta. This is a birthday party favorite!
Also excellent for birthday parties is “The Twig Family in the Oak Tree” a gentle nature story for young children about a family of imaginary twig people who live in an Oak Tree in harmony with nature, and, "The Three Pigs and Other Tales."
Her newest work, “Turtle's New Home,” was funded in part by a grant from the Jim Henson Foundation. It is her own original story about the threatened “Blandings Turtle” and its search for a new and safe wetland habitat. After meeting young Castor Canadensis, the North American Beaver, who is eager to build his first dam, “Blanding” finds that she has a new and safe home for herself and her babies.
Debbie has built over 300 puppets including a commission with the National Park Service at the African American Museum in Boston to teach about the Underground Railroad. This is a set of seven historically accurate puppets representing Harriet Tubman and Louis Hayden, escaped slaves; William Lloyd Garrison, abolitionist; a slave owner; a slave catcher; a male slave and a young girl slave.
With the Award-Winning Gerwick Puppets, which she co-founded in 1974, Debbie has co- produced 12 shows and presented over 5,000 performances in elementary schools throughout much of New England. The Gerwick Puppets are also seen every year at Boston's “First Night”, The Peabody Essex Museum, Salem MA; The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, The Puppet Showplace Theater in Brookline and the Springfield MA Museum of Art.
Debbie has taught Puppetry at Northeastern University, Plymouth State University in NH and Worcester State College. She has presented workshops at Regional and National Puppetry Festivals on sculpting techniques, creating distinctive character voices and has participated on a panel discussion on effective marketing strategies. She has done character voices for the Verizon web site "Super Thinkers" including “Penn Peetnik”, “Mimi Dollop and “Frilla Lafontaine.”
She is approved by the Massachusetts Cultural Council and New England States Touring.