Profile Type: Artist
NEFA Grant Recipient
No Strings Marionette Company

Puppeteers Dan Baginski and Barbara Paulson's traveling stage transforms any space into an intimate theater, where the seamless blend of movement, music and masterful manipulation captivates young and old alike. With puppeteers in full view, the audience sees how the puppets are brought to life. These Vermont artisans lovingly hand craft the marionettes, props and scenery, whether for an original tale or an adaptation of a classic. Titles currently available are The Adventures of Sharp Ears, Bully For The Three Big Pigs, Wasabi A Dragon's Tale, Treasure Hunt, Handsome and Gretel, The Snowmaiden, Jack and the Beanstalk, Nick of Time, The Hobbit, and Scrooge, A Christmas Carol. Shows begin with an interactive song featuring audience members, and finish with demonstrations sparked by the audiences' curious questions. Once the mind believes there are no strings...this realm becomes real...and the Adventure begins!

Residencies and workshops range from a puppet-making session to multi-day events where students stage their own shows. We accompany students on a journey to connect with their own creative self while considering how their creation will engage with the wider world. A process of discovery that strengthens each artists’ skills at becoming intrinsically motivated, self-activated, self-assessing thinkers and creators. At the onset of a project the seed for our long-term goal is planted: you are going to design and create a puppet that you will bring to life for an audience. Always considering the audience fosters a connection to this being that will embody consciousness. How it looks and moves is a reflection of the puppeteer, and that notion seeps to raise each puppeteer’s personal standard of excellence. Form versus function in puppet making is a way to explore and control creative decision making. The maker’s creativity can be unleashed, but the puppet needs to be able to function, to move like the creature of your intent. There is a chance to try out new ideas, and reject them if they don’t suit the overall goal. Students gain the valuable experience of trying out ideas until they work, engendering a habit of persistence. Be brave, problem solve, put yourself out there. Get over the notion of perfection. Puppetry residencies takes a lot of grit to navigate, and there is nothing more rewarding than sensing the pride new puppeteers feel when their audience responds to them, whether in surprise, suspense, laughter or applause. I’ve been told that my enthusiasm for puppetry and joy of sharing my art form engages and excites the student puppeteers. Their post residency reflective notes show they learn to to trust in their own creative instincts, have the persistence to see their vision through, and most of all, have fun during the process.

Additional Links: 

I Have Worked With

  • June 2018 to May 2019

    As a teaching artist for the Community Engagement Lab, Barbara helped facilitate school year residencies with The Danville School and Williamstown Elementary School.

  • April 2019

    The Shaftsbury Elementary School's PTO sponsored a six day arts integrated puppetry and song writing residency around the broad theme of recyling and repurposing. Each grade level chose a specific theme to fit into the larger whole, and puppets performed to their original songs in a school wide residency culmination.

  • April 2019

    Pentangle Arts helped Barnard Academy sponsor a whole school puppetry residency focused on the use, connection to, and appreciation for Water. The residency produced an original puppet show about the Water Cycle, and adapted the book "The Man Who Planted Trees". The culminating evening public performance also featured original songs students wrote with musician Paul Boffa.


  • NEFA Grantee
  • Artist

Contact Information

First Name: 
Job Title/Position: 
Puppeteer / Teaching Artist / Operations Manager
Physical Address: 
Randolph, VT 05060
Last Name: 
TTY Phone: 
802 728-5529


Profile Type: 
Primary Discipline: 
Theater - Puppet
Additional Disciplines: 
Music - Composition
Theater - Playwriting
Theater - Puppet
Visual/Crafts - Dolls / Soft Sculpture
Visual/Crafts - Painting
Visual/Crafts - Sculpture
Year Founded: 
Populations Served: 
General Public
LGBTQ Populations
People with Disabilities
School Groups
Institution/Business Type: 
Performing Groups
Activities and Services: 
Arts for Social Change / Creative Activism
Arts in Healthcare
Arts Instruction / Lessons
Creation of a Work of Art (Including Commissions)
Manufacturing / Fabrication
Performance / Concert / Reading
Residency - Community
Residency - In School
Residency - Production / Development
Workshops / Demonstrations / Master Class
Events Per Year: 
Seasons Active: 
Geographic Reach: 

Affiliations and Accomplishments

Professional Associations: 
Puppeteers of America
Community Engagement Lab Teaching Artist Academy, Fellow in 2018
I am a NEFA Grant Recipient
I am on the following State Arts Agency Roster(s): 
Vermont Education Roster

I am a Touring Artist

I am NEST eligible
Technical Requirements: 
A clear, level cube of space measuring 18 feet wide, by 12 feet deep with a 9 foot unobstructed ceiling height.
Two 20 amp electrical outlets within 25 feet of the stage.
Fee Range Minimum: 
Fee Range Maximum: 
State of Residence: 
Minimum Number of Performers: 
Maximum Number of Performers: 

I am a Teaching Artist

Teaching Settings: 
Afterschool Program
Arts and Cultural Center / Venue
Community Site / Center
Corporate Business
Healthcare Facility
Private Studio
School / University
Subject Areas: 
Arts Integration - English Language / Literacy
Arts Integration - Health
Arts Integration - History and Social Science
Arts Integration - Science / Technology / Engineering
Ages Served: 
Elementary School-age
Middle School-age
High School-age
Fee Range Minimum: 
Fee Range Maximum: