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February to June at The Hullabaloo

Published: 17 January 2019
Reporter: Peter Lathan

The Hullabaloo, Darlington’s theatre for children, has announced its season of shows for children of all ages from February to June.

Running right through until 23 March is the Dreamland, a new creative play installation designed for children from 0 to 4 years and their grown-ups, part of The Hullabaloo’s free programme of specially commissioned activities. There’s no need to book, just turn up. At busier times there may be a short wait.

From 21 to 23 February (various times), Engine House Theatre presents Grandad’s Island, based on Benji Davies’s award-winning book and aimed at ages 4 to 8.

Syd’s favourite person in the whole wide world is Grandad and Grandad’s favourite person is Syd. They are heading off on an adventure filled with songs, laughter and jungles, an adventure which will change their lives forever.

Then in March (13 to 16 at various times), Filskit Theatre’s Kaleidoscope for age 6 to 18 months is inspired by research into how a baby’s sense of sight develops and how they instinctively begin to categorise colour—there are twinkling lights that glisten and gleam. Your reflection is staring back at you. Mirrors, lights, colours and sounds. The world is your Kaleidoscope.

A 25-minute show followed by 20-minute free play at the end.

From 28 March to 10 April (various times), Five is a WinterWalker & Theatre Hullabaloo production for ages 3 to 6. Two dancers and a live musician use their eyes and ears, noses and mouths, fingers and feet to discover a world of play that "makes the ordinary extraordinary".

On 18 May (11:00 and 2:00), the egg, Oxford Playhouse, Conde Duque and Theatr Iolo present Muckers, a physical production for ages 7+.

Paloma has always mucked about with Pijon. They love it. They run wild. They dress up. Like tigers, flamenco dancers, queens, kings, rabbits and Lady Gaga. Everything.

Life is fun and funny and a little bit loopy.

Until all of a sudden, Paloma comes face to face with a blinding light named Big Luce. Paloma doesn’t understand what she’s done wrong but Big Luce just won’t leave her be. Paloma and Pijon are catapulted into a strange new world where they begin their surreal adventure, determined to find out what Big Luce is all about.

It's magical and physical, with original songs and quite a lot of Spanish,

On 24 and 25 May (various times), Slingsby presents Emil and the Detectives, a stage version by Nicki Bloom of Erich Kästner’s 1929 novella, aimed at ages 8+.

Young Emil catches a train to visit family in the big city. Something valuable is stolen. But the thief soon discovers Emil was not such an easy target. A group of quick-thinking and resourceful children rallies around. Can a bunch of kids work together to uncover and outsmart the true criminal?

The original story broke new ground for the independent-children-versus-devious-adults story genre. Streetwise city kids, a hard-working single mother and Emil’s past brush with the law add grit and nuance to this tale.

Finally, on 31 May and 1 June (various times) and aimed at ages 3+, M6 Theatre Company presents One Little Word, a story of friendship and power struggles.

We meet two characters who play together—exploring new space, new objects, dressing up and taking turns—but struggles arise when one of them wants to be the ONLY Captain of the ship.

One Little Word captivates children’s imaginations with a moving story underscored with original music and told with just ONE spoken word, making it the perfect introduction to the magic of live theatre.