About SHRiNKray Puppets

SHRiNKray Puppets is a South African-owned puppet theatre company, founded in 2014 by its directors, Jessica Mias-Jones and Andy Jones. Jess and Andy met in 2010 working as senior puppet builders on the world-famous War Horse, for Handspring Puppet Company, and in 2014 took their creative leap and formed their own independent company – SHRiNKray. Since 2014 SHRiNKray has collaborated on a multitude of highly successful projects.

Jess

A bit about Jess…
After studying Drama and English at the renowned UCT, Jess immediately worked her way into the
S.A. professional theatre scene. She began at the Baxter Theatre Centre in 2008, where she made a
name for herself working on various productions, such as The Tempest, with the Royal Shakespeare
Company, and Coming Home, by Athol Fugard. In October 2009 she banged on the doors of
Handspring Puppet Company, where she took her place as an apprentice puppet maker, and fell in
love with the art of puppet building. By January 2011 Jess had become a senior puppet builder for
Handspring, and at the age of 24 became the production and scheduling manager for the
continuous stream of horse puppets taking the world by storm. Jess would later go on to work
with more South African greats, touring the world with both William Kentrige’s UBU & the Truth
Commission, and John Kani’s, Missing. Since then, her creative focus has returned to home, driving
SHRiNKray forward by collaborating on local and international projects, with the likes of eMzantsi
Carnival, Jungle Theatre Company, Giant Films, Handspring Trust and Princeton University.

Andy Jones

A bit about Andy…
Andy is a master puppet builder, designer and engineer. He has been working in the Theatre
industry for over 20 years as a prop maker, set designer and builder, puppet designer, maker and
puppeteer. Born and raised in the UK, Andy worked as a freelancer for many well established companies
such as the Little Angel Theatre, Half Moon Children’s Theatre, Kazzum and Green Ginger.
Andy later moved on to work for the esteemed National Theatre in London, where he spent almost
two years rebuilding and carefully maintaining puppets for the west end hit War Horse at the New
London Theatre. It was War Horse that would ultimately lead him to his career and life in South
Africa. In 2011 Andy immigrated to SA to work full time as one of the chief puppet builders for
Handspring Puppet Company, where he hand crafted and re-engineered the Tony Award winning
War Horse puppets for three years. In 2014 he cofounded and became the artistic director of
SHRiNKray Puppets, having designed and built puppets for Giant Films, Jungle Theatre Company,
Handspring Trust and a 2 by 3 metre bengal tiger puppet for Princeton University in the United
States. Andy would later become one of the key creative engineering minds on The Firebird by
Janni Younge Productions, astounding audiences with the beautiful, giant secretary bird and beast
puppets.