Freedom day delay a 'huge blow' as Little Angel unveils summer shows

The Puppet Van is part of a programme of outdoor performances in Islington Square

The Puppet Van is part of a programme of outdoor performances in Islington Square - Credit: Supplied

Little Angel Theatre managers called delaying Freedom Day "a huge blow" as they announced a summer season of indoor and outdoor productions and 'puppet picnics'.

Artistic director Samantha Lane and executive director Peta Swindall are "disheartened about the four week delay to Covid restrictions".

"As a small charity who relies heavily on box office income, this is a huge blow and will have a big impact, putting increased pressure on our already inflated fundraising targets and future income targets. Not to mention the workload of our staff team," they said.

"We will continue to be proactive and creative about the many ways we can engage with audiences – both digitally and in-person – as we have done throughout the pandemic. The safety of our performers and audiences will always be our top priority, and we very much hope that the new date of 19 July will remain on track."

The Lost Colour by The Puppet Van is a performance about an artist trying to create the colour pink

The Lost Colour by The Puppet Van is a performance about an artist trying to create the colour pink performed on top of a van. - Credit: The Puppet Van

They unveiled the theatre's 60th anniversary summer season, including adorable animal puppets and original music in Nature Elly from July 2-31. Ages 2-5 will be encouraged to help Elly and Bob find the mystery animal hiding in the haystack and save the harvest when the corn on the farm gets trampled.

Nature Elly is part of the Little Angel's summer line up

Nature Elly is part of the Little Angel's summer line up - Credit: Courtesy of Barmpot Theatre


You may also want to watch:


Little Angel's annual outdoor festival 'Puppet Picnic' runs throughout August in Islington Square with visiting productions including The Puppet Van's The Lost Colour, and LAStheatre's The Lion Inside, for ages 3 plus, based on the book by Rachel Bright and Jim Field about a shy mouse who sets out on a journey to find his roar and meets a lion. Audiences are encouraged to bring a picnic and enjoy the shows.

Last year's Puppet Picnics in Islington Square were a lockdown hit

Last year's Puppet Picnics in Islington Square were a lockdown hit - Credit: Ellie Kurttz

As part of the festival, The Wishing Tree is an outdoor performance based around six magical trees - apple, orange, magnolia, conker, mango and oak - designed by different artists. Running from August 9-29 it's inspired by a new poem Trees of the Green Child by Joseph Coelho - a tribute to the importance of friendship and helping those in need.

The Wishing Tree

The Wishing Tree - Credit: Ellie Kurttz

Most Read

The trees were set up in local schools and through workshops pupils shared their feelings about coming out of the pandemic, worries and wishes for the future. Coelho who incorporated them into the piece about a boy who moves far from his estate and friends, and ends up rescuing a magic tree, said: "Writing a play for Little Angel Theatre has been a long held dream, because there is a certain magic that is created with puppetry. I feel particularly passionate about this project because it gives a voice to children. So often their voices go unheard and it was a real honour to hear their concerns, worries and dreams and to fold them into a play that will be performed in their communities: in earshot of the homes they’ve spent so much time in recently, in view of the trees that hear their wishes."

The Wishing Tree

The Wishing Tree - Credit: Ellie Kurttz

If Not Here…Where? an interactive digital show created with young people at Great Ormond Street will tour hospitals and hospices throughout the summer including St George's in Tooting and Darent Valley in Kent.

And Little Angel's musical adaptation of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler's The Smartest Giant in Town has been extended until 15 August at Little Angel Studio in Sebbon Street.

Looking forward to a summer of community, creativity and live theatre Lane and Swindall said: "We are excited to announce our summer season of work. Both ‘Nature Elly’ and ‘The Wishing Tree’ have been developed in close collaboration with school and community groups which is really important to us.

The Bag that Went Boo by Garlic Theatre

The Bag that Went Boo by Garlic Theatre is for ages 3-8 about a fantastical journey of a paper bag which dives into the sea and travels to the land of snow. - Credit: Garlic Theatre

"Little Angel Theatre runs a dedicated schools partnership programme and community outreach programme in order to break down barriers to engagement and serve the needs of our entire community in a creative way, and we are delighted to be sharing these nature-inspired stories with children and families and giving away hundreds of tickets to local children who have helped us to develop the work."

Tickets and info for all events at https://littleangeltheatre.com/







Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter