LUNA LOVES LIBRARY DAY THE MUSICAL to Premiere in Manchester, Tour Set in 2023 and 2024

Opens on Friday 20 October 2023 at Z-arts in Manchester, with London and Half Moon Theatre dates scheduled.

By: Oct. 02, 2023
LUNA LOVES LIBRARY DAY THE MUSICAL to Premiere in Manchester, Tour Set in 2023 and 2024

'Luna Loves Library Day The Musical' celebrates connection, curiosity and the joy of libraries with a catchy vibrant score and magical set design. It has been adapted by David Gibb and Joseph Coelho from the children's book ‘Luna Loves Library Day' by Waterstones Children's Laureate 2022-2024 Joseph Coelho and illustrator Fiona Lumbers. It is produced and presented by Little Seeds Music, Oxford and Z-Arts, Manchester.

Luna Loves Library Day The Musical' was written by Joseph Coelho and composer David Gibb and is directed by Dermot Daly. It will travel to theatres and libraries across the UK in 2023 and 2024 after premiering at Z-arts in Manchester. 

The story was inspired by Coelho's work visiting and watching the transformative power libraries can have on adults and children. ‘Luna Loves Library Day The Musical' explores libraries as shared spaces to bring families together told through the magical melodies of an original musical score co-created by Joseph Coelho and David Gibb. It is set on a Saturday when Luna goes to the library with her dad to select books for the week ahead. The story sees Luna explore real and imaginary worlds through books, and learn how a library works. Importantly, library day is a special time that Luna gets to spend with her Dad.

Written and played by professional songwriters and artists, the show offers young children and families a high-quality musical experience in their local theatre and library. Kane Matthews (Dream Girls and Motown the Musical) plays Luna's dad and the guitar, and Nicki Davy is the Librarian and Luna's mum, playing piano at the library check-out desk. As composer David Gibb explains “I really wanted to take the magic and quality of West End theatre and reproduce it for young audiences and families who will never get to see those sorts of shows. So often, children's theatre will include music and songs, but those songs don't drive the narrative and define the characters in the same way that they do in musical theatre. In Luna, music and song are at the very centre of the characters and narrative.”

Currently travelling around the country on a mission to visit and join all the libraries in the UK, Joseph Coelho holds a deep affection and passion for libraries. This is expressed in the story which shows the library as a place to explore ideas and feelings, alongside new discoveries and learning. 

Joseph Coelho, writer and Children's Laureate said: “The book suggests a whole world beyond itself, so it's been quite a smooth process adapting this text for the stage with David, especially as Fiona Lumbers and I are on book seven of the Luna series. Working with David on the script and songs has been a complete joy, it is so wonderful to be on the same page as a collaborator as we jam and bounce ideas off one another, finding the heart of the story. I love the free access to books and all the other activities you find in libraries and I enjoyed going to the library as a kid - so those moments of magic when elements escape from the books that Luna opens is something I can very much relate to. I want our audiences to be moved by the live theatre experience, to leave the theatre singing our songs and excited to visit their local library.”‘

LUNA LOVES LIBRARY DAY THE MUSICAL to Premiere in Manchester, Tour Set in 2023 and 2024

Luna Loves Library Day is the first of seven books by Coelho gently exploring what it means for a child when their parents choose to separate. The show will tour professional theatres alongside libraries opening up opportunities for people who wouldn't usually go to the theatre.

David Gibb, the composer said: “Our work at Little Seeds Music is about shared experiences and what is truly special about this show, is the emotional heart which, when you really get down to it, is the story of a relationship between a parent and a child. It's incredibly important to us that the parent and the children are enjoying something on an equal level. We have seen that when children are able to see that their parents are enjoying something, it makes them invest in what they're watching.” 

“Working with Joseph was a joy. I often think that writing songs is a bit like unlocking a puzzle, and every time we got stuck, Joseph always knew the right word, the right line, or the right turn of phrase to unlock the puzzle. He has such a gentle and collaborative way of working which made it so easy to adapt this story. It felt like the songs, lyrics and melodies just tumbled out of us both. There was also a lot of laughter and fun in the writing room which I find is always really important.”

Nomi Everall's flexible set design can be toured to theatre stages and libraries, incorporating surprise pop-outs and magical elements throughout the show, including a bubble machine. The programme will be in the form of a library card presented to the young person and personalised with the date that they saw the show, adding to their experience. 

Zoe Pickering, Head of Programming at Z-arts said: “From the moment we knew that David was planning to adapt Luna Loves Library Day into a Musical we have not stopped smiling. Joseph Coelho is one of our favourite children's writers here at Z-arts and David is one of our favourite children's theatre makers, so combined together we are in for a magical treat. To be able to commission and support shows like this is so important for our families. We are so excited to host the premiere and share one of our favourite stories with audiences both at Z-arts and around the country as it goes on tour.”

Young children and their families, like Luna in the book, will leave the show full of memories about adventure, magic... and a love of libraries.

Luna Loves Library Day The Musical premiers at Z-arts in Manchester on 20 October and is touring arts centres and libraries throughout the UK in 2023 and 2024. For more information visit  

Credit: Luna Loves Library Day The Musical is co-produced by Little Seeds Music and Z-arts, and supported by Big Imaginations, Wonder Arts, The Story Museum, and Manchester City of Literature. Luna Loves Library Day was first published by Andersen Press in 2017. Little Seeds Music and Z-arts are supported by Arts Council England.

PR representative: For interviews and further information please contact:

Tour Dates 2023 

Friday 20 to Sunday 22 Oct - Z-arts Manchester 

  • Fri 20 Oct 6pm, Sat 21 Oct 11am & 2.00pm, Sun 22 Oct 11am & 2pm

Tuesday 24 October - Tameside

Wednesday 25 October - Burnley Central Library

Thursday, October 26, 2023 - Darwen Library

Friday 27 October - Kirklees TBC

Saturday 28 October  St Helens Library

Weds 1. Thurs 2 November - Bolton Library

Friday 3 November - Sale Library

Saturday 4 November - Urmston Library, Manchester

Monday 6 to Saturday 11 November - Spark Arts, Leicester schools and library


Friday 2 to Thursday 8 February - The Story Museum 

Saturday 10 February - The Lyric, Hammersmith

Sunday 11 February - Front Room, Weston-Supermare

Monday 12 February - Farnham Maltings, Farnham

Tuesday 13 February - The Gulbenkian, Canterbury

Thursday 15 February - The Met, Bury

Friday 16 February - Newhampton Arts Centre

Saturday 17 February - Tanya Moiseiwitsch Playhouse, Sheffield

Sunday 18 February - Warwick Arts Centre, Coventry

Saturday 24 February - The Royal and Derngate, Northampton

Sunday 25 February - Norwich Playhouse, Norwich

Monday 26 and Tuesday 27 February - Chesterfield Library Theatre, Chesterfield

Thursday 29 February to Saturday 2 March - Half Moon Theatre, London

Sunday 3 March - Yate Library, Bristol

Monday 4 March - Southmead Library, Bristol

Wednesday 6 March - Worksop Library

Thursday 7 March - Sutton in Ashfield Library

Friday 8 March - Mansfield Library

Saturday 9 March - Beeston Library

Sunday 10 March - West Bridgford Library

About Little Seeds Music 

Little Seeds Music was established in 2015 with the mission to provide children and families with unforgettable, high quality musical experiences for all generations to enjoy and share together. Their work is supported and recognised by Arts Council England and they have created work in association with Half Moon Theatre, Z-arts, The Story Museum, and The Met, Bury. As well as producing theatrical touring work, they also coordinate engagement projects across the country with a focus on providing opportunities for young people to develop songwriting and composition skills. Their 2020 digital production ‘Rolling Down The Road' was named by the Guardian as one of the best pieces of theatre to stream that year, and their work has toured extensively across the UK to venues including Sage Gateshead, HOME, Warwick Arts Centre, Nottingham Theatre Royal, and The Marlowe.  

About Z-arts 

Z-arts is the UK's only dedicated arts centre for children and families and is the cultural epicentre of the Hulme community in Manchester. Z-arts mission is to use creativity to inspire, enrich and enable generations of children, young people and their families in Manchester and beyond, to help maximise their potential. They do this by supporting children, young people, artists, educators, and family-togetherness in their Arts Centre in Hulme, in education, in communities, at home and across networks.


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