Presenter Profile

Dream Puppets


Dream Puppets is a puppet theatre company which has been performing its brilliant, visual and distinctive style of productions to audiences of all ages in Australia and around the world for over twenty-five years.

The company was founded by Richard Hart, a puppeteer/maker/designer with over 30 years of experience in the visual and performing arts. 
Julia Davis joined Dream Puppets in 2001 and is a co-creator/maker/performer with the company.
They have recently moved to regional SA, close to Adelaide, Richard and Julia create theatre for children, using the puppetry art form to encourage and nourish the imaginations and vision of children from preschool age upwards .

Their work is offered for Primary School students, but it is actually suited to all ages. Sometimes teachers book their productions for senior Theatre Studies students.

Dream Puppets is the leading exponent of black light puppet theatre in Australia, and Richard has explored this medium in exciting new ways. He has developed a heightened visual experience and innovative style of story-telling through his iconic Dreamer productions, about a curious, brave, childlike character who is challenged by adventures in a dream-like environment.

The vibrancy and ingenuity of black light puppetry is supported by original music, created for each production by award-winning Melbourne composer, John Grant. These black light shows are accessible to diverse audiences, as spoken language is not used.: Dreamer, Dreamer In Space and Dreamer's Night Before Christmas in Space, Dreamer in the Deep, Dreamer and the Rainbow Tiger.

Company History

Dream Puppets, founded by Richard Hart in 1996, have achieved local and international distinction during the past 25 years. They have been invited back, year after year, to perform the Dreamer shows in festivals in Italy, Israel, Japan, Singapore, Korea , Argentina and China, and have been recognised with awards for their unique productions. Within Australia, Dream Puppets have toured extensively, presenting to schools, festivals and theatre audiences and have performed in most major Australian festivals encompassing children’s theatre and puppetry.

Past productions include puppet productions of Shakespeare plays for children, including 5 years of touring Macbeth for secondary students in Victoria and SA, and in 2017, a puppet production of The Tempest was launched at the Wheeler Centre and performed for primary school-aged audiences.

Further Information

Richard was trained as an architect and later gained a post graduate degree in Professional Practical Art studies in Sydney, 1981. He also taught puppetry and video production at an independent primary school in Melbourne for 7 years, during which time the school won 6 A.T.O.M. awards for student video production.
Richard has worked in television and film, designing, making and performing with puppets. He was part of the construction team for the Arena Spectacular, Walking With Dinosaurs, and performed and voiced the puppet character of ‘Webster‘ in the television series, Li’l Horrors.

Julia studied at Melbourne University, has an honours degree in English, plus postgraduate teaching qualifications and a Grad. Dip. in Opera and Music Theatre from the Victorian College of the Arts. She has sung professionally in Australia and overseas, has taught Secondary School English and Drama, puppetry at TAFE, and art and craft activities, with a special interest in sculpture.

Richard and Julia construct all their own puppets and sets, so these are works of art in their own right. The production values of the company are very high, as shows generally take up to three years from inception to realisation, to achieve an original and stunning aesthetic.

Because all props, sets, stages and puppets are original creations, Dream Puppets can also offer follow-up discussion and demonstration in these practical areas after school performances.

Over the years Richard and Julia have been engaged in Artist in Residency programs at Scotch College (2013 and 2015), St Leonard’s ( 2016), Blackburn Lakes Primary (2017), and Westbourne Grammar ( in 2019) and Fairfield Primary (2023).

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