A BRIEF HISTORY OF PUPPETRY OF THE PENIS
As of today most of the Western World has played host to PUPPETRY OF
THE PENIS, with it having played to millions of people in over 35 countries,
and in 5 languages.
Puppetry of the Penis was born when Simon Morley teamed up with fellow
puppeteer David Friend. Their first show at the 1998 Melbourne International
Comedy Festival was received as the "Outright Best Show".
The name Puppetry of the Penis was originally conceived by comedy
producer Simon Morley, as the title of a highbrow art calendar. Released in
1997, the calendar showcased twelve of Simon's favourite penis installations,
but male genitalia on display 12 months a year proved too much for most, and
sales were poor, forcing Simon to take the show to the stage to move a car
boot full of calendars quickly going out of date.
Quickly realising this was indeed a two handed show, Simon’s natural choice
of partner was David “Friendy” Friend, who had made quite a name for
himself on the college and bachelorette circuit performing his own collection of
Their debut at the 1998 Melbourne International Comedy Festival was a huge
hit, kicking off an eight-month tour of Australia. The national tour covered
20,000 kilometres and was been captured in the documentary Tackle Happy.
Subsequent sell-out runs in Sydney and Melbourne encouraged the boys to
take their wares to the 2000 Edinburgh International Fringe Festival, where
they were humbled by yet another sell-out run. When a West End producer
realised the potential of the show (after attending a performance where the
woman sitting next to him wet her pants laughing), the world was no longer
safe from the Art of Genital Origami! Contracts and mops were brought out,
and a deal was made on the spot: PUPPETRY OF THE PENIS was on its
way to London's West End.
The show ran for 6 months delighting Londoners and A-list celebrities alike,
including Hugh Grant, Naomi Campbell, Elton John, Bono and The
Beckham’s. This was followed up by a sell out national tour of the United
Kingdom and Ireland.
Next on their list was north America. Their campaign of domination began with
a sell out 6 week run at the prestigious Festival Circuit in Montreal, before a
sell out run in Toronto. New York city was next with the show opening on 42nd
St and continuing to run for nearly 2 years. While there 4 other companies
were put on the road, enjoying sell out seasons in Chicago, Boston, LA and
San Francisco to name a few.
The year was capped off by a memorable appearance on The Tonight Show
with Jay Leno, which was one of the highest rating shows of the year.
Much of the next decade the show continued to return for successful seasons
in Australia, the UK, Canada and New Zealand, and the USA, while also
conquering most of Europe and Scandinavia.
2015 will see the Genitalia Juggxrnaught continue to expand, with a feature
film in the works and tours of Australia, the UK, Denmark, Belgium, Israel,
Canada, Italy and, most excitedly, the setting up a flagship show in the
entertainment capital of the world this April, Las Vegas.
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