Summer of fun at Chickenshed

Susan Jamson from Chickenshed invites children to get involved with the many events taking place at the Southgate theatre during the summer holidays

The cast of Cinderella In Boots
From 3rd August Chickenshed will be presenting its first-ever summer family panto, Cinderella in Boots

As the schools break up for the summer holidays and we are all wondering what we are going to do to keep our children occupied through the long days and weeks ahead – we at Chickenshed believe we’ve got the solution.

Our ‘Children’s Festival of Fun’ programme includes two weeks of activities, events, performances and plenty of fun! The festival is kicking off on Sunday, 31st July with Tales Big Day Out, a carnival day for children and their families – it is like Glastonbury, but without the mud!

Children aged up to eleven can enjoy a year’s worth of shows all merged together in two hours of bitesize bursts. The tales team takes over all of Chickenshed’s indoor and outside spaces and fills them with song, dance, action, performances and workshops.

Other events during the two-week programme, which concludes on 14th August, include ‘Storyworld Yoga’, a mix of movement and storytelling, where well-known children’s books are told through the beautiful power of movement and yoga. We also have Storyworld without the yoga, where we will be telling stories from local writers and authors, including My Crown by Erina Lewis – and a different mystery story at each performance. Children can even come and tell their stories, as theirs are the stories of tomorrow.

During the festival programme we also will be taking children on a sensory journey, exploring two forms of communication – singing and signing! We aim to support the development of language and communication for early years through fun and colourful singing, while using British Sign Language. Signing and singing isn’t just for little ones, however. We will be showcasing many more signs in an interactive performance workshop for older children, aged from seven to eleven years.

Performance is aa huge part of our festival. From Wednesday, 3rd August we will be presenting our first-ever summer family panto, Cinderella in Boots. We have taken the original story of Cinderella and turned it upside down and inside out to tell the story of a very unique Cinderella, a smashed slipper, a shoe shop, lots and lots of boots – and very pretty sisters but a not very nice king. See how many fairytale favourites you can spot as our heroine marches on the city to reclaim her crown!

Between the many festival activities, our Tales from the Shed team are proud to bring their theatre version of Keilly Swift’s hugely popular and brilliant manual, How to Make a Better World back to the stage this summer. It is a colourful, musical show full of song, dance and interaction with the audience. We will take ideas and activities from Keilly’s book and, with some assistance from the cast, our audience will create a manifesto packed with ways that we can all use to make our world a better place. You can get involved between 6th and 13th August.

To find out about the many events happening at Chickenshed during the school summer holidays:

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