Puppet-masters at Little Angel Theatre move in to Islington schools to bring curriculum to life thanks to £8k grant

Puppetry at the Little Angel Theatre in Islington

Puppetry at the Little Angel Theatre in Islington - Credit: Archant

A theatre is looking to bring the art of puppetry to children across Islington who are missing out on creative activities due to financial and social barriers.

The Little Angel Theatre, which prides itself on being based in London, is going into partnership with schools across the borough from September.

According to the theatre team, at least half of the primary school students in the surrounding areas have never visited the small, 100-seat venue off Upper Street due to lack of opportunity.

In order to change this, the crew are giving schools access to a wealth of resources to bring the curriculum to life using puppetry.

William Tyndale and St Mary’s primary schools in Upper Street and Fowler Road have already signed up to take part, with more set to follow suit during the academic year.

Expanding the offerings of the theatre, often described as a hidden gem of the borough and an important part of Islington’s heritage, has been made possible thanks to a grant of just over £8,000 from national education charity the Ernest Cook Trust.

“With the help of the trust, we are thrilled to be able to offer children in Islington the opportunity to engage with the arts via their schools,” said Sarah Schofield, the theatre’s schools programme manager.

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“We look forward to building stronger relationships with our community and opening our doors to children who may not otherwise engage with the theatre.”

Puppet masters John and Lyndie Wright opened Little Angel in November 1961. More than just a theatre, it also has a workshop dedicated to making the puppets used in the shows’ productions.

On top of the new wave of workshops in Islington schools starting in September, the theatre crew pride themselves on engaging young people in an art form that may be unfamiliar to those who have grown up with technology at their fingertips.

The Dagmar Passage theatre puts on a Saturday puppet club, after-school workshops and home education sessions on making puppets, as well as running the “little angel youth theatre” for students aged between 11 and 17.

For more information on youth projects on offer visit littleangeltheatre.com.