I'm in the thick of prop and scene creation for a middle school production of The Little Mermaid.
I am also making the tentacles for and altering a dress for Ursula. We have a student puppeteer who will control a couple of the tentacles. Though, I've gone back and forth on having Ursula control the (2) tentacles in front by movement of her arms or actions with her hands. (not sure if this is a good idea or not). Then have puppeteer control one tentacles over each hip — keeping the (4) remaining tentacles at the back non-mechanical/without motion. What is the best way to attach the tentacles allowing for best control and motion? Should the puppeteer handle ALL of the mechanical tentacles and keep Ursula's hands free? The dress for Ursula is very floofy and strapless (not my choosing) so I'll be adding a strap around the neck. She will be moving around and using her arms/hands for creating potion in cauldron, etc.
What will be the best way to attach the tentacles to a harness and feed the cables to the appropriate places?
What should each mechanical tentacle be sleeved before incorporating into the fabric skin?