by Joe Bromley and Willow Nash

Red loves bedtime stories with Grandma.  As well as reading them from a book, they make up their own too.  Stories with a beginning, middle and an end; goodies and baddies; adventure; excitement… and lots of ‘suddenlies’!

But one evening, as Red and Grandma settle down with ‘Once upon a time…’, they are interrupted by their neighbour, the wily Mr Wolfe, urged by his new wife to demolish Grandma’s ancient treehouse.  Enraged, Grandma sends him off with his tail between his legs – back to the vain Svetlana with her passion for endless stuff, and his son, Edwin, a spoilt but lonely child, who struggles with reading and needs help with his story homework.

Edwin sees his chance to get his father’s attention and brings a faulty genie into their lives… triggering a dangerous quest and a race against time!

Can Red inspire Edwin to be a) Adventurous, b) Brave and c) Courageous?

Will Edwin ever get the attention he needs from his dad?

And will Svetlana finally accept that Perky Purple hair dye will never be the new black?!

Join these lively characters battling to save Grandma’s treehouse!  Meet a magic mirror!  Persuade a bird of paradise to lay an egg!  Learn about the importance of friendship and why “stuff” doesn’t always have to be bought.  And there’ll be a trip on a flying carpet!

Suitable for KS1 and KS2

Running time 50 minutes

This show is a springboard into learning for the new primary curriculum, focusing on literacy.  Suddenly…! provides a thorough entry point into storytelling, using traditional tales and PSHE, history and nature.  Our resource pack for teachers also features discussion points and activities in artdrama and physical education for use prior to and following our performance.

We can also perform this show as a festive version, making it an excellent REALLY BIG PANTO alternative!

SUDDENLY…! is also available as a chapter book!  We’ve adapted it into a short story and added two further adventures for Grandma and Red, with glorious illustrations by Rosie Alabaster throughout, and presented in a dyslexia-friendly format.  The book can be bought from us at events, and is stocked in Chicken & Frog, Stoke Newington Bookshop, Burway Books, Sevenoaks Bookshop, Foyles or Waterstones.

A ‘non-stop adventure featuring delicious wordplay’ (Kentish Towner) – SUDDENLY…! is also a ‘rip-roaring’ audiobook!  Can you spot all the objects in Grandma’s hair on the cover illustrated by Rosie Alabaster on our What’s on page?  Published by Strathmore, it’s available in Waterstones, Haslemere Bookshop and Owl Bookshop.

Pre-show activity
Grandma will need all the help she can get sorting out that faulty genie!  She’s going to try a spell from a very special book but it calls for LOTS of voices… can you help her by learning it before the show and remembering to say it with her when she needs you?  You’ll be just like actors learning their lines for a play!  Here it is:

Share, care, try your best
Mind your manners and wear your vest
It all comes back to the A B C
Be the hero of your own story!

Plus – we can provide you with some pants templates (really big ones) as an optional pre-show craft activity!  The children can decorate them for Grandma and hang them on washing lines in our playing space before we arrive.  We have performed under some marvellous displays!