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10 Feb – 10 Jun 2017
UK Tour

4 star
“Raises your heart rate and gives your tear ducts a workout…the show’s grace chiefly stems from Finn Caldwell and Toby Olié’s puppetry.”
Sunday Times

“The animals enchant. The puppetry is extraordinary and the reason to see this show. They are life-sized works of art.”

The Times

“It’s all about the elephant in this visually stunning production…the life-like attention to detail is so believable, it’s hard to remember Oona is not one being but four actors, skilfully co-ordinating her every move.”
Chichester Observer

“The puppetry is sumptuous. Not merely the puppets themselves but the forensic understanding of every nuanced movement which defines the animals they are depicting.”
West Sussex County Times

“Superb skill and such artistry it is easy to suspend disbelief and feel the puppet animals which dominate the stage are indeed real – it’s a sheer delight.”
Birmingham Mail

The Children’s Touring Partnership presents










Based on the novel by Michael Morpurgo
Adapted by Samuel Adamson

“I’m not alone. You saved my life Oona, so I’m not going to lose it now.”

For Lilly, going to Indonesia is a new start, and the chance to ride an elephant called Oona. But then the tsunami hits. Charging deep into the jungle, Oona escapes the danger of the beach with her young rider desperately clinging on. Miles from civilisation, at first there’s wonder, discovery and tree-top adventures amongst the orang-utans. But, as thoughts turn to mum left behind on the beach, wild tigers prowl, hunger hits, and Lilly must now learn to survive the rainforest. Then come the hunters.

Having first been staged in promenade, then outdoors, Michael Morpurgo’s jungle epic was reconceived for a tour of proscenium arch theatres around the UK. Featuring a revised script, a dynamic new set design and additional puppets, this ambitious production inspired by an astonishing true story played to fifteen venues in just four months.

Creative Team

Directors Timothy Sheader & Dale Rooks
Designer Paul Wills
Puppetry Design & Direction Finn Caldwell & Toby Olié
Movement Director Georgina Lamb
Original Songs Composition Rod Paton
Sound Score Nick Powell
Lighting Designer James Whiteside
Sound Designer Nick Sagar
Associate Director Jon Pashley
Associate Puppetry Director Laura Cubitt
Associate Puppet Designers Nick Barnes & Dulcie Best
Puppet Fabricators Daisy Beattie, Cheryl Brown, Hugh Purves, Zosia Stella-Sawicka, Bronia Topley & Charlie Tymms
Assistant Fabricators Phillipa Bean, Georgia Dacey, Amber Donovan & William Selby


Oona an elephant Elise de Grey, James Charlton, Michael Peters & Wela Mbusi
Mani an orangutan Romina Hytten & Fred Davis
Frank an orangutan Darcy Collins
Alternate Puppteers Scarlet Wilderink & Gareth Aled
Lilly Jemima Bennett/India Brown/Annika Whiston
Grandma Liz Crowther
Mum/Samaritan Balvinder Sopal
Dad/Red Bandana Kadeem Toisin Amore
Mr Anthony Jack Sandle
Dr Geraldine Corinna Powlesland
Mahout/Kaya/Nurse Stephen Hoo

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