From Norwich to Hong Kong - all the world’s a stage for Norwich Puppet Theatre

Horse and Bamboo production of Hansel and Gretel at The Norwich Puppet Theatre. Puppeteer Mark Whita

Horse and Bamboo production of Hansel and Gretel at The Norwich Puppet Theatre. Puppeteer Mark Whitaker with Hansel, Gretel and audience member Emilia Tallat, 6.Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

It is definitely a case of all the world is a stage for Norwich Puppet Theatre this festive season.

Horse and Bamboo production of Hansel and Gretel at The Norwich Puppet Theatre. Puppeteer Aya Nakamu

Horse and Bamboo production of Hansel and Gretel at The Norwich Puppet Theatre. Puppeteer Aya Nakamura with one of the puppets.Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

For as the city venue is hosting a production of Hansel and Gretel for Christmas, one of its own shows, Three Colours, is also heading halfway around the world to Hong Kong and Macao.

Here in Norwich, audiences are enjoying the opening weekend of Horse and Bamboo Theatre's touring production of Hansel and Gretel, the classic tale about a brother and sister who are left alone in a forest and discover a witch's house made of sweets.

The show, which is in Norwich until December 31, is performed by puppeteers Mark Whitaker and Aya Nakamura.

Mr Whitaker, who was previously a puppeteer at Norwich Puppet Theatre for about 15 years, described the production of Hansel and Gretel as 'magical, lyrical but also quite down to earth.'


You may also want to watch:


'It's very traditional. We have stayed as close as we can [to the original story],' he said.

'There's a breadcrumb trail and the witch is gotten rid of in the traditional manner - without wanting to give too much away!'

Most Read

He said the show combined puppetry and animation and had lots of surprises.

'It's also all in rhyme with quite a massive nod to Roald Dahl in the way we have written it,' Mr Whitaker said.

Six-year-old Emilia Tallant was among the first audience to see the show in Norwich on Saturday.

The youngster, who watched the production with her grandparents Tracey Wells and Chris Jennings, from Cromer, said: 'It was a bit scary in the scary parts but I liked it when it was in the good parts.

'I liked the badgers - they were really cute.'

Horse and Bamboo Theatre is based at Rawtenstall, near Manchester, and the Hansel and Gretel production has been directed by Alison Duddle with music by Loz Kaye.

The production is fundraising for Norwich Foodbank after each show.

Hansel and Gretel is at Norwich Puppet Theatre until December 31. Tickets £9 per person or £30 for a family ticket for four people.

For more information and to book tickets, visit www.puppettheatre.co.uk or call the box office on 01603 629921.

Do you have a Norwich arts story? Email arts correspondent Emma Knights at emma.knights@archant.co.uk

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter