We're pleased to be part of Helen Murray's (@helenmurraypix) extraordinary #OurEmptyTheatres project documenting 22 empty theatres across the country at this moment in time.
During these extraordinary times, the Unicorn is responding with a new digital theatre project Unicorn Online - a fresh, innovative approach to making online theatre for young audiences during the building’s closure. Launching with Anansi the Spider Re-spun and streamed in partnership with The Guardian, this unique project brings theatre direct from the homes of the artist to the homes of the audience.
Each week from Sat 30 May, an online story of Anansi – the ultimate mischief-maker and master spinner of yarns – will be streamed for free on the Unicorn’s YouTube channel and The Guardian’s website. The show is aimed at ages 3 to 8 years. Alongside the Anansi episodes, there will be free downloadable activities for teachers and parents and a free online workshop where viewers can learn a song from Anansi, send in a recording and feature in an online Anansi community choir video.
Justin Audibert has shaped three of the most popular stories from his 2019 production – Brother Anansi and Brother Snake, Anansi and The Two Dinners, Anansi and the Pot of Wisdom – specifically for an online audience. Working alongside film company Illuminations and featuring the original cast of Afia Abusham, Sapphire Joy and Juliet Okotie, each scene will be captured by them within their own homes and edited within the current pandemic restrictions, bringing each scene together with a live, spontaneous sense of performance.
Using the technology available and celebrating the ‘at home’ nature of the filming and editing, the Unicorn aims to deliver a bold, fun and new way to tell stories that spark the imagination. The Unicorn is currently closed to the public but its mission to engage, inspire and entertain young people remains vital.
The theatre hopes to continue to serve audiences through Unicorn Online – its new hub for digital theatre experiences for children. Premiering with this innovative, digital-specific production, the Unicorn aims to support young people through this time of crisis when they are living with more physical rules, social limitations and personal frustrations than many will have ever experienced. The theatre will continue producing more digital projects over this time as a way to reach more young people across the city, as well as across the UK and beyond.
Unicorn Online has been made possible with the generous support of the Backstage Trust and Bloomberg Philanthropies. Anansi the Spider Re-Spun is streamed in partnership with The Guardian.
You can view the poems here.
“It’s vital to me that everyone can visit us regardless of financial circumstance. Young people have a right to experience great art of the same quality that we adults seek for ourselves.”
- Justin Audibert, Artistic Director
"I believe in the power of words because they need no mediation": this National Poetry Day, We Talk To Tim Crouch about his play I, Cinna (the poet).
15 Minutes Live is a Pay What You Decide event which, for Alan, is an initiative echoed in all of his work at Slung Low: “Pay What You Decide is a central part of how we do everything as a company; our shows, our college classes, lending our equipment and van - everything. It’s got two important roles. The first is to allow people to explore a role that isn’t a customer - we’re constantly turned into customers nowadays and it’s a belittling role. We are citizens. And that is powerful. And Pay What You Decide is a small part of allowing people to feel like powerful citizens. And secondly, it allows people who don’t already know that theatre is exciting and brilliant to try it out with less risk- theatre feels like a lot of money if you aren’t sure.”
Would you and your child like to be in a new short video about the Unicorn?
We’re looking for a parent/carer and child to be in our new video which highlights our location and the fun things families can do for free in the local area. The video will be 1 minute long and used on social media and our website.
Date & Time: Thu 29 August, 2 - 4.30pm
We're looking to cast a child approx 7 - 12 years old, with one or two parents/carers.
We're able to offer a free family ticket (up to 4 free tickets) to see a show at the Unicorn (up until June 2020) in return for your time.
We will film you walking from London Bridge station to the Unicorn, then playing by the fountains and having a picnic in Potters Field park (both are a 2 min walk from the theatre).
The child will be the primary focus of the filming, and it will be a relaxed, fun and happy couple of hours! The video will also have animation and other footage, so you are likely to appear in approx 30 - 40 seconds of the final film.
On the day you will be joined by one cameraman with a small hand-held camera, and our Marketing Manager, Jane.