OUR MISSION

To provide unique theatrical experiences; to educate, to celebrate, to rejuvenate puppetry and the allied arts.

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BRIEF HISTORY OF the

Bob Baker Marionette Theater

Since 1963, the Bob Baker Marionette Theater has been part of the Angelino Community; since then, imagination and fantasy continue to thrive in Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Landmark #958. With over 200 performances a year, utilizing over 2000 handcrafted puppets, the organization caters to birthday parties, school groups, weddings, and community functions of all sorts. After 50 years of having entertained over one million children of all ages, we are proud and excited for 50 more years of pulling the strings of family fun!

Today,  our mission is to provide unique theatrical experiences; to educate, celebrate and rejuvenate puppetry and the allied arts. Furthermore, Bob Baker Marionette Theater is now a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, and this will transition our current space into an institution that encapsulates the old and grows into something new.

Who is Bob Baker?

L to R: Alouysius the Birthday Dog, Bob Baker, Happy the Birthday Dog, Alton Wood, Percy the Birthday Dog

L to R: Alouysius the Birthday Dog, Bob Baker, Happy the Birthday Dog, Alton Wood, Percy the Birthday Dog

At age eight, Baker trained with several different Los Angeles-based companies before giving his first professional performance for director Mervyn Leroy. While attending Hollywood High School, he began manufacturing toy marionettes that sold both in Europe and the United States. After graduation he became an apprentice at the George Pal Animation Studios. A year later he was promoted to head animator of Puppetoons. After World War II, Baker served as ananimation advisor at many film studios, including Disney. His puppetry was featured on TV in BewitchedStar TrekLand of the Giants and NCIS; and on film in the 1944 movie Bluebeard, in A Star Is BornG.I. Blues, Disney's Bedknobs and Broomsticks and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Baker was also instrumental in championing union membership for puppeteers. As a result, Screen Actors Guild andAFTRA now recognize puppeteers as actors with a special skill. He has also provided a place of learning for the next generation of puppeteers, including Scott Land and Michael Earl.  Bob Baker (1924–2014) was an American puppeteer whose marionettes have entertained thousands of children and adults worldwide for more than 70 years.

Baker and partner, Alton Wood, turned a run-down scenic shop near downtown Los Angeles into a family entertainment institution: The Bob Baker Marionette Theater. The Bob Baker Marionettes have performed around the globe (even on Navy ships and submarines!), with an inventory of nearly three thousand puppets. Like Bill Baird before him, Bob Baker is an American pioneer in the art of puppetry.

Bob Baker passed away at 90 years old on November 28, 2014 of natural causes at. He left behind a lifetime worth of smiles and memories, thousands of enchanting, hand-crafted puppets, his Cultural-Historical landmark: the Bob Baker Marionette Theater, and a beloved crew of people dedicated to keeping Bob's enduring vision ever-lasting. 

At 8-years-old Bob Baker saw a puppet Show.  
More than eighty years later, that experience has grown into a cultural landmark.

FAQ

WHAT IS HAPPENING TO THE BBMT?

We are proud to be continuing the Bob Baker Marionette Theater experience for another 50 plus years! We're getting a new building based on Bob's original vision.

WHERE ARE WE GOING?

Staying right where you know and love us! Adapted into a new development complex, we will rejuvenate the theater all based around Bob's original vision! 

WHAT ARE WE DOING NOW?

We're becoming a non profit so we can better serve the community. We are hosting a series of celebratory performances at our Landmark theater to showcase Bob's Legacy before the location undergoes renovations. When the remodeling is underway, we will still have performances at different locations in Los Angeles. 

WHEN WILL THE THEATER UNDERGO RENOVATION AND FOR HOW LONG?

The Theater renovation will begin at the end of 2017 and we expect it to be finished by 2018/2019.