StoneLion Puppet Theatre is a professional not-for-profit theater company dedicated to expanding the horizons of the young and young-at-heart through the art of puppetry in an interdisciplinary community of ethnic and cultural diversity.
StoneLion Puppet Theatre was founded as a for-profit company focused on running a high-quality local children's theater. In 2001 the decision was made to expand to providing programming for "at risk" populations, providing more localized community projects. At that time StoneLion received not-for-profit standing.
While continuing our touring company, StoneLion created a new community outreach program, The Metropolitan Earth Day Festival. Four 'mini-events' placed into underserved Kansas City MO neighborhoods in partnership with the Kansas City Parks and Recreation Commission led up to this free local Earth Day Festival. In 2008, expansion of our Earth Day community outreach took place with 6 mini festivals leading up to an environmental giant puppet play in the sculpture garden of The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art on May 11, 2008. This production was an amazing success with over 3000 in attendance. The year 2009 saw the continued expansion of our Green Day Festival series with seven local Kansas City MO festivals in area Community Centers and Parks. This series once again culminated in a large scale puppet pageant on the lawn of The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in July of 2009. In the year 2010 StoneLion produced seven localized festivals and moved our large pageant to Theis Mall focusing on the importance of clean water by actually floating giant puppets down Brush Creek. This series reached over impressive 9300 residents and tourists of our city. For the seventh year now StoneLion was presented as part of The Smithsonian Institute's Theatre season. This national exposure not only confirms the high quality of StoneLion's work but also the far-reaching tourism appeal of its productions. StoneLion is also a member of The Kansas City Young Audience's touring roster and Missouri Arts Council touring roster.
Heather Nisbett-Loewenstien, Artistic Director, started StoneLion years ago when she discovered puppetry melded performance and design into one big lump of fun that could communicate complex ideas and messages in a way that traditional theater could not. She has directed, designed and performed in over seventy different productions for the company. Heather holds degrees in theater from Boise State University and the University of Dublin, Trinity College.