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Mike Petersen

     

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Mike Petersen, also credited as Michael Petersen, is a Canadian puppeteer and actor who performed on Fraggle Rock and in Labyrinth. Other credits include Audrey II in three Canadian theatre productions of Little Shop of Horrors, Bruce the Gorilla in Halifax Film's Gemini Award-winning pre-school series The Mighty Jungle, and Binoo in Toopy and Binoo Vroom Vroom Zoom!

From 1984 - 1994 Petersen toured and performed in many productions with Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia, including visits to Japan, Australia, the British Isles, all across Canada, and throughout the United States. He also toured Poland, Scotland and England with Teatr Arlekin and The Edinburgh Puppet Company's production of The Dancing Princesses.

He served as director of Festival Antigonish’s Young Company from 1997 to 2000 and wrote the puppet fairytale The Redheaded King. His autobiographical monologue Don't Get Me Started was performed at the Toronto Fringe Festival in 2005, featuring a Fraggle puppet built by Terry Angus. The play paid tribute to Petersen's two creative mentors: Jim Henson, and George Lucas. Other theater credits include the title role in Bunnicula and killer puppet Kane Pomeranski in The Babysitter.

Mike created and performed several characters in As You Puppet, a new adaptation of Shakespeare's As You Like It using stuffed animals. Designed as a child's introduction to Shakespeare, As You Puppet won "Best of the Fringe" during the 2009 Toronto Fringe Theatre Festival, and was picked up for a two-week run at Young People's Theatre (in Toronto) for its 2010/11 season.

His one-man Good Old Fashioned Punch & Judy Show has appeared in Toronto Buskerfest, the Puppets Up! festival in Almonte, Puppet All Sorts (twice!), and the SpringWorks Festival in Stratford.

In his developing role as a teacher of puppetry, Mike has worked alongside Graham Whitehead at Mermaid Theatre, Allen MacInnis at YPT, Lynda Hill at Theatre Direct, Eric Woolfe at Eldritch Theatre, David Ferry at Toronto Masque Theatre, Shawna Reiter at Clunk Puppet Lab, and Seanna Kennedy, director of the first Canadian production of Avenue Q at Lower Ossington Theatre, Toronto.

Outside of puppetry, he recently acted opposite Kevin Spacey in the feature film Casino Jack, opposite Dean Cain in the Hallmark Christmas special The Case for Christmas, and played emcee Papageno for the Mooredale Concerts "Music and Truffles" series, exposing children to classical music.

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