Canvas Sky Theatre
with CLUNK Puppet Lab


by Sarah Joy Bennett
Co-created with
Ginette Mohr and Shawna Reiter
  • MotherCorinne Murray
  • PuppeteerGinette Mohr
  • PuppeteerSarah Joy Bennett
Creative Team
  • DirectorSarah Joy Bennett
  • Puppetry DirectorShawna Reiter
  • Associate DirectorGinette Mohr
  • Guest Puppetry DirectorMike Petersen
  • Production DesignShawna Reiter
  • DramaturgyAlysse Rich
  • Lighting DesignMelissa Joakim
  • Music DirectionDavid Atkinson
  • Production Stage ManagerStevie Baker
  • Stage ManagerEden Patterson
  • Puppet ConstructionShawna Reiter
  • Jonathan Davis
  • Marketing & PublicityDavid Atkinson
Director’s note
Like many new parents, when my daughter was born my world suddenly shrunk to the size of my couch, where the voices in my head would be my only companions during the long, unending, painful night feeds. During this time of isolation and sleep deprivation, everything became a kind of waking fever dream.

I started imaging the objects in my apartment talking to me – some kind, some cruel – and I began writing these conversations down. Months later, when I started talking to other moms about these bizarre encounters, a truly remarkable thing happened: they knew exactly what I was talking about!

I also realized that those strange and dark little characters that peopled those nights, while they had the power to torment me, they could also be turned into ridiculous vehicles of comedy, able to bring humour, understanding, even pathos. It then became my mission to create something that made other mothers feel less alone. I wanted to de-fang all those shame demons and pull the bogeymen out into the daylight.

Puppet Director’s note
When Sarah Joy approached me about creating a baby puppet, I was excited by the prospect of designing and building something that I felt so close to – being a first time parent, I immediately connected with the script. I was also delighted that my fellow creators intuitively understood that puppetry defies the boundaries of a single discipline, and thus demands that artists, designers, writers, and performers move beyond traditional collaborative methods and work toward bringing life to the puppet.

I consider the primary characteristic of puppetry to be a belief in the hidden life of the inanimate object; revealed through the design of a character which is then animated with movement and gesture, becoming infused with human-like yet otherworldly qualities. The audience’s investment in the performance becomes more active as the puppet acting as an empty vessel begs the commitment of the observer’s ego. It places them in closer proximity to the action of the story, engaging them on a visceral and empathetic level, causing the resonance and impact of the experience to be more personal.
Share your story
Night Feed was inspired by stories shared by mothers through community groups. Contribute your story by using the hashtag #ididnightfeeds and help keep the conversation going!
Being at home with a new baby can be challenging at the best of times. There are so many things we don’t talk about in early motherhood: postpartum depression, postpartum anxiety, psychosis, trauma, difficulties with feeding – the list goes on. If you find you’re struggling, please know you’re not alone. The City of Toronto offers a wide variety of support. For a complete list of helplines and nearby programs, visit the following URL: “Asking for support takes courage and is definitely not easy, but this is often the most important step in your recovery.”
Special thanks to: Ann and David Powell, Alexandra Montagnese, Andy Massingham, Emily Pearlman, Ingrid Hansen, Tim Freeman, Ellen Roach, Laura Mae Nason, Mike Barber and Victoria Laberge. Our heartfelt gratitude also to the partners, grandparents, childcare workers, and every member of our community that have supported and assisted us in raising our families and making our art. Thank you all for being our village – we need you!

Night Feed was made possible with the generous support of the Ontario Arts Council, in partnership with The Toronto Fringe Festival, Theatre Smith-Gilmour, and PuppetMongers Theatre