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A ‘choose your own adventure’-style live digital production of Sean Taylor’s Where the Bugaboo Lives directed by Little Angel artistic director Samantha Lane and designed by Ellie Mills. From 14 March – 2 May. Tickets on sale from 1 March (£13.50 per household).

Julia Donaldson’s The Smartest Giant in Town is brought to life in a new co-production with Fierylight. Samantha Lane directs and collaborates on the adaption with Barb Jungr. From 21 May (subject to government guidelines).  Tickets on sale soon.

New digital series People Behind the Puppets celebrates 60 years of ground-breaking puppetry design as Little Angel’s very own puppet ‘Angel’ interviews makers including Toby Olié and Alison Alexander. Weekly from 1 April.

Inspired by a brand-new Joseph Coelho poem, The Wishing Tree will see ‘magical trees’ appear throughout Islington this Summer designed by artists including Sam Wilde and Ingrid Hu and populated by puppets made by local children. From June 2021.

Created with young people at Great Ormond Street, Little Angel’s co-production with GOSH ‘If Not Here…Where?’ has been adapted into a digital production that can continue to tour hospitals and hospices throughout the summer transporting some of the most isolated children to a magical fantasy world.

Since March 2020 Little Angel’s free digital series Watch, Make, Share has been viewed over 757,000 times in 90 countries with more than 140 videos created.  New short digital plays and puppet-making activities will continue to be released every two weeks.

The iconic Little Angel Theatre, much loved by families for generations, celebrates its 60th anniversary with an adventurous and enchanting year of work, the first half of which is announced today.  

Little Angel first opened its doors on Saturday 24th November 1961 when a troupe of enthusiastic puppeteers under the leadership of John Wright found a derelict temperance hall in Islington and transformed it into a magical little theatre, specially designed for children and for the presentation of marionette shows.  Now under the leadership of artistic director Samantha Lane and executive director Peta Swindall, boundary-pushing puppetry is at the heart of this unique theatre, which ignites the imaginations of the youngest minds and equips tomorrow’s puppeteers with the skills to become world-class artists.  

Tucked away down a quiet Islington street, this 90-seat puppetry powerhouse has recently built a new global audience, reaching more families and young people than ever before throughout lockdown. With children starved of culture and interaction, Little Angel adapted fast to the closure of theatres last year and made their work quickly accessible through digital formats which have been watched all over the world, with productions and accompanying puppet making activities inspiring and engaging young audiences in more than 90 countries, receiving over 757,000 views.  This success has enabled Little Angel to go further in supporting their large freelance theatre family, staff and community throughout the last year.  

As well as being an internationally recognised theatre with productions touring throughout the UK and across the globe, Little Angel has its roots in Islington and works closely with its local, diverse community on participation events and activities throughout the year, giving away thousands of tickets so all can benefit and enjoy this remarkable art form.

Looking forward to the year ahead, artistic director Samantha Lane and executive director Peta Swindall introduce the first half the 60th Anniversary season:

“The new season kicks off with an adventure-style play for an adventurous year as we continue to find advanced and innovative ways to engage our audiences digitally with a new production of Sean Taylor and Neal Layton’s interactive story ‘Where the Bugaboo Lives’. Each performance will be different as young audiences ‘choose their own adventure’ while they watch, deciding which way the story goes.   Following this, we cannot wait to welcome audiences back to our theatre, as soon as it’s safe, to see our new production of Julia Donaldson’s much-loved story about helping others in need ‘The Smartest Giant in Town’ and look forward to collaborating with Fierylight for the first time.  We are also kicking off a new digital interview series ‘’People Behind the Puppets’ to celebrate 60 years of the world-class artistry at the heart of Little Angel. We hope it will inspire the next generation of puppet makers. 

Created from ideas and stories from young people at Great Ormond Street, our production of ‘If Not Here…Where?’, toured hospitals and hospices throughout the UK last February.  Now at a time when young people in hospital feel more isolated than ever, we are so proud to have created a digital version of the show enabling it to tour again in a Covid-safe way this summer.  We also hope to brighten up the streets of Islington with a special project this June ‘The Wishing Tree’ inspired by a new poem by Joseph Coelho.  Our community is at the heart of everything we do and this is a wonderful chance to celebrate our birthday with them.

We have been overwhelmed by the response from children, local and far afield, to our Watch, Make and Share free digital series created in response to lockdown. We hope it has made a difficult time a bit brighter for our young audiences and are thrilled to be able to continue to create new digital shorts and activities for families to enjoy throughout the year to come.”


Where the Bugaboo Lives
Digital production
14 March – 2 May
Transferring to Nottingham Lakeside Arts 27 & 28 March, CAST Doncaster 30 & 31 March and The Albany 6 & 7 April
A Little Angel Theatre production
Based on the book by Sean Taylor and Neal Layton
For ages 5-11
Tickets on sale from 1 March (£13.50 per household)

The popular story by Sean Taylor (writer behind Little Angel Theatre’s Finding Santa) is brought to life in Little Angel’s first made-for-zoom, choose-your-own adventure style show for 5-11 year olds.

Floyd and his sister Ruby creep into the dark, shadowy valley behind their house… a valley full of all kinds of spooky, creepy creatures and the scariest of them all, the Bugaboo!

Join Floyd and Ruby at every step of their journey, as you decide which path they take and what monsters they meet. 

Directed by Samantha Lane
Music composed by Dominic Sales
Designed by Ellie Mills
Associate Designers Jessica Shead and Ruby Saide 
Lighting designed by Sherry Coenen
Performed by Roberta Livingston and Jessica Manu

Illustrations © 2015 Neal Layton 
WHERE THE BUGABOO LIVES written by Sean Taylor & illustrated by Neal Layton. Reproduced by permission of Walker Books Ltd, London SE11 5HJ

The Smartest Giant in Town
From 21 May (subject to government guidelines).
Based on the book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler
Adapted by Barb Jungr and Samantha Lane
A Little Angel Theatre and Fierylight co-production
For ages 3-8
Tickets on sale soon at

This heart-warming tale about friendship and helping those in need is brought to life in a musical, puppet-filled adventure, following on from Little Angel Theatre’s bestselling adaptations of Julia Donaldson’s picture books including The Singing Mermaid, Paper Dolls, The Flying Bath, The Further Adventures of the Owl and the Pussycat and The Everywhere Bear.

George wishes he wasn’t the scruffiest giant in town. So when he sees a new shop selling giant-sized clothes, he decides it’s time for a new look: smart trousers, smart shirt, stripy tie, shiny shoes. Now he’s the smartest giant in town . . . until he bumps into some animals who desperately need his help – and his clothes!

Adapted by Barb Jungr and Samantha Lane
Directed by Samantha Lane
Music composed by Barb Jungr
Set and costumes designed by Kate Bunce
Puppets designed by Judith Hope
Lighting designed by Sherry Coenen 

This dramatisation of The Smartest Giant in Town is based on the picture book The Smartest Giant in Town © Text Julia Donaldson 2002 and © Illustrations Axel Scheffler 2002, published by Macmillan Children’s Books.

People Behind the Puppets
Free digital series
From 1 April

Over the past 60 years, a huge range of designers have brought their unique puppet designs to life on the Little Angel Theatre stage – from marionettes in Angelo to light-up foxes in Wow! It’s Night-Time and cardboard creations in the online adaptation of I Want My Hat Back. In this new online series, Little Angel’s very own puppet ‘Angel’ will meet and interview these designers, finding out more about their experiences of puppetry design and why they love working in the field. Each designer will also bring along an easy puppet make that children can follow along at home.  One interview will be released every week from 1 April at

The Wishing Tree
June 2021
Community project and puppetry festival

Inspired by a brand-new poem written by Joseph Coelho (Werewolf Club Rules, The Girl Who Became a Tree, Overheard in a Tower Block), six magical trees will pop-up in community locations across Islington designed by artists Alison Alexander, Maia Kirkman-Richards, Ingrid Hu, Seb Mayer, Emma Tompkins and Sam Wilde. Exploring themes such as friendship, freedom and kindness, each tree will be populated by puppets made by local children. Residents and passers-by will be able to watch as each tree grows and becomes more colourful over time, and the project will culminate in a two-week festival of outdoor public performances in June.

If Not Here… Where?
Digital production
June 2021
Tour of UK hospices and hospitals

Sometimes extraordinary worlds can appear in the most ordinary of places…

Produced in partnership with GOSH Arts and inspired by stories and ideas from young people at Great Ormond Street Hospital, this puppetry and digital hybrid production toured the UK in February 2020, visiting 19 hospitals and hospices from Bath to Edinburgh and beyond.

In a year when so many people have felt isolated, but no more so than young people in long-term hospital care, Little Angel have now adapted the production to make it purely digital, enabling it to tour in a COVID-safe way this summer. 

If a portal opened up at the end of your bed, would you be brave enough to step through? Join an adventure into a fantasy landscape where you will be transported through mysterious tunnels and emerge into a cacophony of colour. Will you climb an enormous tree, sail away in a boat or lie back and look at the stars?

If Not Here… Where? Is free for hospitals and hospices for more information contact [email protected].

Directed by Laura Hunt
Designed by Ellie Mills
Music composed by Dominic Sales 
Performed by Joni-Rae Carrack and Aaron Spendelow
Creative technologists: Clarice Hilton and Michael Golembewski

Watch, Make, Share
Free digital shorts and puppet making activities
Throughout the year

Little Angel Theatre’s popular Watch, Make, Share series of digital shorts and puppetry-making activities will continue into 2021, with a new short and craft activity released every two weeks.  The upcoming programme:

From 28 February – The World of Sound Scribbles by Little Bean Theatre (as part of Chinese Arts Now Festival)
Babies are always curious about sound, they make a lot of sound in their daily lives too! Have you ever thought that these sounds they make are actually music? Let Little Bean bring you to the sensory world of Sound Scribbles – babies’ explorations of sound, accompanied with original music.   Part of the Chinese Arts Now Festival 2021

From 21 March – Envis and Outo by Sam Sutherland Productions
Envis and Outo are snowflakes. Every year their community undertakes an incredible journey from ice to water to air to water to ice again. But the extraordinary thing is, they can never return looking the same. Envis refuses to join in The Journey because she doesn’t like change. Can Outo persuade her that there is so much more to see?

Written by Samantha Sutherland
Puppetry by Jess Mabel Jones
Music by David Hewson

From 28 March – Suitcase Circus by Folded Feather
Suitcase Circus is a live globetrotting theatre performance which has graced the stage in pretty much every place you can imagine a show going on.  This extraordinary menagerie is a who’s who of the world’s most talented objects.

For your viewing pleasure this special online edition of our fantastic circus of discarded things will showcase; a virtuosic dancing milkshake straw, the world’s only acrobatic potato sack, the magical hat-frog Timrek the Fantastico and much much more!  All of this is cleverly tangled together by the anarchic, ringmaster-sock, Wobulous Discombobulous.

Puppetry, Music and Sounds – Oliver Smart (Folded Feather)
Film Production – Alexander Michaelis & Kimberley Mirren (Studio Kix, London)

Folded Feather is an innovative puppet company with an established reputation for the creation of outstanding theatre productions, socially-focused communications design, and high-quality on-screen content.

From 11 April – The Stone Soup, by Bronia Evers and One Moment in Time Storytelling
A new retelling of the classic European folktale. Three travellers arrive in a village and claim they will make soup from a stone, which sparks the curiosity of the locals…

This short film features puppetry, storytelling, original music, and a specially designed ‘crankie theatre’ with scrolling paper scenery. 

The first recorded publication of Stone Soup appeared 300 years ago, yet this enduring folktale has never felt more relevant, with its themes of community, resilience, generosity and cooperative spirit.

Storytelling and puppetry by Bronia Evers
Music and lyrics composed and performed by Martina Schwarz
Co-devised by Bronia Evers and Martina Schwarz
Crankie theatre and shadow puppets designed by Bronia Evers
3D puppet designed by Tinka Slavicek
Filmed and edited by Inti Rowland

More Watch, Make, Share to be announced soon.