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Watermans Announces First Online Children's Theatre Commission Based On The Greek Myths

Myths and Adventures from Ancient Greece will premiere on YouTube over 4 days from 13th January.

Watermans will present Myths and Adventures from Ancient Greece, a series of four online children's theatre shows written by Hannah Khalil (15 Heroines, Jermyn Street Theatre; Not The Gingerbread Man and Mrs Scrooge, Fly High Stories; and A Museum in Baghdad, RSC). Created for 3-8 year olds, Myths and Adventures from Ancient Greece will explore the tales of Persephone, Theseus and the Minotaur, King Midas and his Golden Touch and Pandora's Box. The plays will be available to view online from 13 January 2021.

Children will enter a miniature world full of exciting adventures, with the battered insect Hope as their guide. Hope journeys into the world of Ancient Greece to escape Pandora's Box, warn King Midas of his greed, seek Persephone in the Underworld and help Theseus to defeat the Minotaur. With charming designs from Sam Wilde (Fly High Stories, Hiccup Theatre Company), under the direction of Ian Nicholson (I Want My Hat Back, This is Not My Hat, I Found My Hat with Little Angel Theatre), this project offers an engaging and delightfully imaginative adventure to Ancient Greece. Ian Nicholson and Peyvand Sadeghian (Little Angel Theatre, Goblin Theatre) perform.

Following successful forays into online events in live gigs and film talks, Watermans has turned its attentions to this commission for children because of its continued commitment to widening access to theatre among young people. It is also clear that many children simply won't have that opportunity to visit the theatre over the coming months because of coronavirus restrictions and Watermans believes this poses a risk to developing future audiences. This commission helps to bridge that gap, bringing the joy of theatre into the home or classroom in theatre shows designed to be viewed online.

Watermans chose the Greek Myths because of their enduring and timeless appeal and the way they address what it means to be human which can ignite interesting conversations with even the youngest children. The Greek Myths are also on the KS2 curriculum so this series is an additional resource for teachers who are looking to inspire their pupils.

Director of Watermans, Jan Lennox, said:

"It is exciting to be commissioning children's theatre specifically designed to be watched online as we know that in this way we can reach new audiences, including those who don't usually come to the theatre. It's also important that we support the early careers of talented young artists like Hannah Khalil, Ian Nicholson and Sam Wilde who have so much to contribute in terms of inspiring a love of theatre in children."

Playwright Hannah Khalil said:

"I'm so excited to have the opportunity to make a piece for young people. My 8 year old has long wanted to watch my work, and at last she can. To be reimagining four classic myths that I love and working with the brilliant team behind I want My Hat Back has been a light in a dark time. I hope these pieces bring smiles to lots of faces, both young and old alike."

Director Ian Nicholson and Designer Sam Wilde said:

"Creating these new Greek adventures with Hannah has been incredible fun for us to work on. Her stories bring fresh imagination and mischief to the ancient tales and we've loved the challenge of exploring them in puppetry."

Myths and Adventures from Ancient Greece will premiere on YouTube over 4 days from 13th January and then be available on that platform for 3 months.

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