Find out the latest news from behind the scenes at the Unicorn!
Are you aged 14-21?
Are you a singer or a musician?
Do you live in London?
We’re looking for musicians, singers and performers to join performance artist Kim Noble, director Pol Heyvaert and musician Jakob Ampe to create and perform a new piece called Wild Life FM in our 2017/18 season: an honest, raw exposition of what it’s like being young today.
The piece will be developed and devised using the skills and lives of you, the cast. Send us a short video example of your work by 23 June 2017 and we’ll be holding auditions in July. Tell us the meaning of music in your life and help us create the antidote to the current talent show culture. Performers will earn £1,000.
This show is not going to be what you expect. It’s not a play. It’s not a gig. It’s also both those things.
Performer fee (payment to you): £1,000
Rehearsals: 4 December 2017– 11 January 2018
Performances: 12 – 20 January 2018
A collaboration between arts centre CAMPO (Before Your very Eyes, Next Day, Five Easy Pieces), Unicorn Theatre London and Norfolk & Norwich Festival.
In Spring 2016, Pol Heyvaert, Kim Noble and Jakob Ampe and ten young singer-songwriters aged 15 – 22 from across Norfolk created Wild Life, a performance commissioned by the Norfolk Norwich festival. Developed organically from the lives of the performers, the songs that they write and what science tells us about how teenagers’ brains work, this theatre piece uses original music and everyday sound bites as a backdrop to expose the stark truths about being young in 2016, and about the complex teenager’s mind and the influence of (mainly sad) music.
“Wild Life is genre-defying, boundary-busting and the most innovative work I have seen so far this year. (…) In a refreshing, amusing and fun concert like no other they present a narrative about making a show about themselves and in doing so perform their reflective, angry, joyful and original songs about their young adult lives in the contemporary world.” Eastern Daily, 20 May 2016
Wild Life was the catalyst for a deeper conversation between Pol Heyvaert and Kim Noble, it was as if this creation exposed a much bigger potential, which both Pol and Kim are now ready to tackle.
In 2017-2018 WILD LIFE FM will be created, building on the heritage of Wild Life, in a Unicorn Theatre and CAMPO collaboration. Funny, beautiful, angry and painfully honest, Wild Life FM will explore the lives of young people and the universal experience of how music makes you feel – all within the frame of a live radio show, created for a live (theatre) audience.
The result will be a participative theatre production that will be adapted to each city and context it’ll be presented: local teenagers on stage mixed with some teens from the previous show (Norfolk, London, Gent, … ).
Kim Noble will explore the worrying aspects of teenagehood with them. Jakob Ampe will work with them on music. Pol Heyvaert directs.
Our hearts go out to the families, friends and loved ones of the victims, and to all of those affected by this terrible attack.
As representatives of the cultural venues in the area, we are working together to ensure that our venues remain safe, open and welcoming to all. We will continue with our programmes as planned and demonstrate the cultural sector's spirit, strength and ability to unite people of all backgrounds.
London is a city defined by its culture. We all intend to play our part in continuing to build and share this culture, and to welcome visitors from the city and the world to our creative events and spaces.
Menier Chocolate Factory
Siobhan Davies Dance
The Old Vic
The Unicorn Theatre
We're very proud to announce that our "stupidly lovely" (Time Out) production of Jeramee, Hartleby and Oooglemore, for ages 3+, will return for a four week run from mid March before it goes on tour to Dublin in April and Brighton in May. We're also very much looking forward to seeing Fionn Gill (who also played Septimus in Septimus Bean and His Amazing Machine in 2016) return to play Oooglemore and to welcome newcomers Jude Owusu as Jeramee and Lotte Tickner as Hartleby.
The Unicorn Theatre is 70 this year and this is a real moment to celebrate Unicorn founder Caryl Jenner’s passion that 'the best of theatre for children should be judged on the same high standards of writing, directing, acting and design as the best of adult theatre'. Our Artistic Director Purni Morell said ‘Jeramee, Hartleby and Oooglemore in particular is a show that truly demonstrates the Unicorn’s commitment to creating the very best, and to experimenting with what is possible.’
Directed by the ever-brilliant Tim Crouch (I Malvolio, An Oak Tree) and written by the exceptionally talented Gary Owen (Iphigenia in Splott, National Theatre; Violence and Son, Royal Court), Jeramee, Hartleby and Oooglemore is an impeccable and utterly delightful piece of theatre. See it if you can, wherever you can.
‘International cultural exchange is good for everyone who comes into contact with it. At the Unicorn we see ourselves as the flagship for theatre for young audiences in the UK and being based in London – a culturally diverse city with people from all over the world – we take our responsibility to connect people from across the globe very seriously.’
Purni Morell, Artistic Director
Seesaw (written by Stewart Melton and opened by Sarah at the Unicorn in 2014) is set in a sandpit and is about two children working out how to be themselves and how to be with other people. The play explores emotions and feelings common to all children no matter where they live or what language they speak. Working with local actors and technicians through an Arabic language translator, Sarah directed the show over a few weeks. It’s now ready and opened on 17 Nov. It will then become part of the centre’s regular repertoire, playing to local Jordanian children for seasons to come. Sarah Argent said:
Other work in this year’s festival includes A Mano from Spain (which also played at the Unicorn last year). The festival closes on 20 November with a run of Seesaw performances which we hope will go down there as well as they did with our London audiences…
The Unicorn Theatre is one of 21 UK theatre companies that are urging the Government to honour its commitment to refugee children with legal right to enter the UK.
This is our joint statement:
Auditions are now closed, thank you to everyone who expressed an interest.
We are looking for child performers to take part in two Unicorn shows in our new 2016 / 2017 season - Adler and Gibb (directed by Tim Crouch) and Double Double Act (made in association with Made in China).
We need four children, two girls, two boys aged 8 or 9 in June 2017 who are adventurous, confident, and curious and are ready to try something new. We need children who like to play, who are talkative and subversive, who will delight in trapping, tricking and winning against adults, and who can be very mature but also delight in nonsense and absurdity. Double Double Act is on at the Unicorn from 20 Jun - 9 Jul 2017.
Find out more about the show here: /Double%20Double%20Act
Audition workshop July 23rd and 24th July 2016
Adler and Gibb
Tim Crouch and the creative team are looking for local girls aged 8-9 years to participate in the live performances of Adler and Gibb at the Unicorn (30 Aug - 3 Sep). Girls do not need to be available for all performances.
Find out more about the show here: /AdlerAndGibb
The selected child must be available to attend a 1 day meeting and rehearsal with Tim Crouch and the cast at Queen Mary University of London in July - the date and time will be confirmed.
Do you love coming to the Unicorn with your family? Join our Parent Ambassador scheme and get closer to the action!
To find out more about becoming an Ambassador, please join us at our Summer Event on Wednesday 29 June, 7 - 9pm.
Hear from special guest speakers such as Matthew Robins, the man behind our unique adaptation of Ted Hughes' The Iron Man coming up in 2017, and find out more about the making of our 5-star smash hit show, Baddies: the Musical. This will be a great opportunity to meet other ambassadors and members of the Unicorn team.
There will be drinks and a light picnic-style dinner and we'll give you lots of information and materials to take away.
Please RSVP by emailing Jane.firstname.lastname@example.org by Monday 27 June and let me know how many places you would like.
We are on the lookout for a baby to take part in a photoshoot for a show in our new season. Think you can help? Full details below:
When: Sat 21 May, late morning for approx 2hrs
Where: studio in Forest Hill (address to follow)
If you would like to take part, please send us your contact details and a recent baby photo to email@example.com by Thu 19 May. Travel expenses will be covered and we will provide refreshments on the day. As a thank you for taking part, you’ll receive 2 free tickets for a show in our new season.
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The Odyssey is obviously the starting point and I use quite a bit of it, but I think this play is set in no time, because in theatre, it can be so many times at once. That’s what interests me about the theatre. And these stories are told in so many different ways and mean different things at different times.
I think different writers work in different ways, I think some writers do that in their heads but I tend to do it on paper; I work through a lot of drafts. What I’ve noticed when I look back on things is there will be bits that will really stay the same throughout and there are bits that change. It’s a cliché that writing is re-writing and I think that’s very much the case for me. I mean playwriting is a kind of excavation, you know looking for something. It’s like going into an underground city; you hit a bit and then you hit a bit somewhere else and then eventually you’ve actually got what you were looking for. Sometimes you hit in a more exact spot and sometimes you’re really quite far away and it takes a while to get it. You don’t know until the end, until you’ve got this city, then you know what’s going on.
I might give some possible stage directions, I don’t mean stage directions, instructions, if people are going to do something on stage then I’ll suggest it, but if a director decides to do it in a different way that’s fine.