Phil Willmott

The Gruffalo’s Child Comes to the West End

The Gruffalo’s Child The Toxic Avenger, who takes up residence at the Arts Theatre in September won’t be the only monster heading to the West End this winter. Although the Gruffalo is a much more cuddly beast designed to appeal to kids and the child in us all.

Following the success of the original Gruffalo stage show in central London, sequel The Gruffalo’s Child centres around his daughter who must learn to be brave in the outside world when, one wild and windy night she ignores her father’s warning, ventures out into the snow and risks an encounter with the scary Big Bad Mouse.

The Gruffalo show had wonderful, eye-popping set, costumes and puppetry so it’s great to hear this new piece will feature fresh designs in the same tradition.

It will be performed by Andrew Mudie (The Gruffalo/Predators), Catriona McKenzie (Mouse) and Sophie Alice (The Gruffalo’s Child), with understudy Jake Addley.

The Gruffalo’s Child is produced by award-winning theatre company Tall Stories, founded in 1997 by co-directors Olivia Jacobs and Toby Mitchell, who have become market leaders in providing great, school holiday, theatre shows for youngsters. Previous hits have included the Olivier Award Nominated Room on the Broom, The Snail and the Whale and The Snow Dragon. They’ve entertained families in the West End, on Broadway, in the Sydney Opera House and toured to many other countries. Their General Manager is the industrious producer Kenny Wax who’s recent successes with grown up theatre has included Top Hat, The Play That Goes Wrong, Peter Pan Goes Wrong and The Comedy About a Bank Robbery.

The world first met the Gruffalo family in the award-winning picture book, The Gruffalo’s Child by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler when it was published by Macmillan Children’s Books in 2004. It received the W.H. Smith Children’s Book of the Year award in 2005 and an award-winning animated film premiered on BBC1 on Christmas day 2011 to 10 million viewers. Since then it’s sold over 17 million copies worldwide and been translated into 73 languages.

Kids go nuts for this stuff. If you don’t believe me ask my 3 year old nephew who never tires of me reading it to him.

The Gruffalo's Child