Grimm Tales for Young and Old by Philip Pullman: An Immersive Fairytale

Grimm Tales for Young and Old by Philip Pullman: An Immersive Fairytale adapted and Directed by Philip Wilson

“…Nibble, nibble, little mouse,
Who is nibbling at my house?
Don’t be frightened, my little dears! Just come inside, my darlings…”

This autumn, Philip Pullman’s compelling GRIMM TALES return in a brand-new immersive story-telling experience that will plunge adults and children alike into the subversive world of the Brothers Grimm. This exciting production will take over the sprawling Bargehouse on London’s South Bank, November 21 2014 – February 15 2015, bringing another selection of delightfully twisted tales to life.

Here, in one of London’s most atmospheric and untouched spaces, the infamous fairy tales are no longer bound to their pages but are trailing your footsteps, breathing softly down your neck and unravelling before your eyes; Follow Hansel and Gretel’s rumbling bellies as they wander the forest to find a freshly baked cottage and a rancid old witch, and watch an ambitious amphibious creature try his slimy luck in the sack with a shallow Princess.

Adapted from world-renowned author Philip Pullman’s ‘Grimm Tales for Young and Old’ by Director Philip Wilson (the former Artistic Director of the Salisbury Playhouse), there will be unnervingly intimate encounters with unforgettable characters from the tales, before audiences are left to fend for themselves in the folkloric surroundings where music seeps from the sinuous corridors and every corner offers an opportunity of dark discovery.

For twelve weeks the lofty Bargehouse – a building which has long cast its shadow across the Oxo Tower Wharf – will be totally transformed, its derelict labyrinthine chambers becoming an inspired world of overgrown forests, slaughterhouse kitchens, crumbling industrial castles and dilapidated attic ballrooms. Guided by 16 storytellers audiences will be forced to shift between voyeur and adventurer, never fully able to orientate themselves inside the structure’s towering layers.

Pullman said of the adaptation: “When I saw this team’s previous production at Shoreditch Town Hall, I was thrilled with the vividness and fidelity with which they’d carried the tales from the page to the performance space. Imagination, wit, a mastery of all the theatrical possibilities of lighting and costume and make-up and the simple magic of transformation all combined in an experience that was a joy to encounter. I’m sure the venerable Brother’s Grimm themselves, if they could see it, would be as delighted as I was.”

The production team behind the GRIMM TALES run at Shoreditch Town Hall in Spring 2014 return in full for this brand-new celebration of live story-telling; The Old Vic Tunnel’s Valerie Coward, with 20 years of experience producing immersive theatre shows, will produce, along with Executive Producer Cat Botibol, Creative Development Director for agency pd3, an award-winning creative outfit lauded for its work in culture marketing and bespoke branded experiences.

Masterfully recreating the Grimm World again is Set & Costume designer Tom Rogers, Tom Rogers who recently designed the costumes for Robbie Williams’ Swings Both Ways Worldwide Tour, Happy Days (UK Tour) and Powder Her Face for Opera Company Philadelphia, while Howard Hudson returns as Lighting Designer (Vert Vert & Fidelio (Garsington Opera), Bedroom Farce, Separate Tables (Salisbury Playhouse) and Brazouka (UK, South Africa and Australia Tour). Composer and sound designer Richard Hammarton, whose credits include The Crucible (The Old Vic), Ghost From A Prefect Place (Arcola) and Beached (Marlowe Theatre/Soho Theatre) also returns to the production.

From the infamous to the unfamiliar, the tales coming alive this November will be The Frog King or Iron Heinrich, Hansel and Gretel, Thousandfurs, Faithful Johannes, The Goose Girl at the Spring and The Three Little Men in the Woods.

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