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Unicorn Theatre - Spring 2013 and beyond

Something Very Far Away. Photo credit: Robert Day

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

ARTISTIC Director Purni Morell has announced plans for Spring 2013 and beyond at the Unicorn Theatre, the UK’s only purpose built theatre for young audiences. Highlights of the season include:

Mister Holgado by Christopher William Hill – Sunday, March 24 to Sunday, April 28 (Weston Theatre).

Directed by Matthew Lenton and designed by Kai Fischer, Mister Holgado is described as a deliciously dark and gruesomely funny new play, in the tradition of Roald Dahl and Lemony Snicket.

Conrad tells his parents there is a tiger living in his wardrobe, a tiger with a penchant for champagne truffles. But they think it is all in his imagination. When his parents suddenly welcome the mysterious stranger, Mister Holgado, into their home, Conrad worries he is more of a threat than any tiger could be. But parents always know best, don’t they?

Christopher William Hill’s writing credits include the book Osbert the Avenger from his series of books, Tales from Schwarzgarten.

Read more about Mister Holgado

Carnival by Manuela Capece and Davide Doro – Tuesday, April 9 to Sunday, April 28 (Clore Theatre).

Italy’s Compagnia Rodisio bring their own vibrant and anarchic fun to London with Carnival. Created through a series of workshops with school children in Southwark, Carnival is about the power of imagination, the madness of art and the endless possibilities of paper mache.

Something Very Far Away, written, directed and with original score by Mark Arends – Tuesday, May 21 to Sunday, June 2 (Clore Theatre).

Kepler is an ordinary man who loves two things beyond all others; his wife Tomasina and the cosmos. When Tomasina is killed in a tragic circus accident, he remembers that the deeper into space you look, the further into the past you can see. Grieving, he builds a spaceship so that he can travel into space and look back on his happy memories on earth.

Something Very Far Away, which returns to the Unicorn following its sell out run last year, is described as a strange and beautiful exploration of sadness, mortality and wonder. The show is animated in front of the audience and is told through projection, puppetry and music (no words at all).

The cast is Mark Arends, Tim Lewis, Ben Whybrow and Ayve Leventis.

Design and animation are by Matthew Robins and lighting is by Declan Randall.

There will be late night performances of Something Very Far Away with a post-show bar and live music on Friday, May 24 and Friday, May 31 at 9pm.

The production is suitable for ages 8 years and upwards.

Lionboy, from the novels by Zizou Corder – Tuesday, July 9 to Sunday, July 21.

Charlie Ashanti is eleven years old. He’s a perfectly normal boy, except for one thing: he can speak to cats. When Charlie’s parents are kidnapped, he sets off on a rescue mission – with a little help from a floating circus and its pride of performing lions.

Award-winning theatre company Complicite presents its first show for families and young people, inspired by Zizou Corder’s best-selling Lionboy trilogy. Adapted for stage by Mike Kenny (The Railway Children), Lionboy is directed by Complicite founder Annabel Arden.

The Unicorn’s spring/summer season also features a selection of shows for under fives – Shoofly Theatre’s You’re Not My Friend Anymore, Teater Pero’s Aston’s Stones and We Dance Wee Groove by stillmotion; plus Oily Cart’s production Tube for children with profound and multiple learning disabilities, Nick Makoha’s My Father and Other Superheroes on Father’s Day and Box Clever’s Romeo and Juliet.

For more information and to book call the box office on 020 7645 0560 or visit

Monkey Bars continues at the Unicorn Theatre until January 26, 2013. Also at the venue: E V Crowe’s Liar, Liar.