Polka Theatre Winter Programme

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Polka Theatre's autumn and winter season brings a fresh programme of work to the south London venue dedicated to audiences ages 0 - 13 years.

Starting in September, Polka will open the season looking back to the 2011 riots that swept across the UK with their new production, Sticks & Stones. Upcoming British playwright Ali Taylor has written the play using stories, opinions and words collected from children in cities that were affected by the disturbances. This explosive and thought-provoking production invites young people to discuss what they thought about the riots and what it means to be growing up in the UK today.

As usual, Polka provides welcome relief during the festive season by bringing a classic story for all ages to the stage. This year, Toby Hulse's adaptation of Kenneth Grahame's The Wind in the Willows will delight ages 5 - 11 and their families. This well-known riverside tale featuring Ratty, Mole, Badger and Toad combines music, songs and the usual Polka magic.

Early years audiences will be charmed by the award-winning production Too Many Penguins? which was recently voted best show for children and young people at the Critics' Awards for Theatre in Scotland (CATS). Promising early years audiences a fun theatrical experience with lots of penguins, this is the perfect winter production for 1 - 4 year olds.

Visiting Adventure shows, workshops and after-school clubs will feature throughout the season. This includes Mike Kenny's Red Riding Hood for ages 4 - 7 years and Yellow Earth's celebration of Chinese New Year, Why the Lion Danced for ages 6 - 11. Free events also mark an exciting season at Polka as the theatre celebrates creativity and participation with Big Draw activities throughout October, an exhibition created by students from Wimbledon College of Art and inspired by The Wind in the Willows, as well as their usual season of free storytelling events. Polka is also delighted to hold a free craft fair on the first Sunday of each month opening up their building to locals, families and fans of all things handmade.


Autumn and winter at Polka Theatre
Polka Theatre announce their 2012 - 2013 autumn and winter season of shows.

29 September - 27 October 2012
Polka Theatre presents
Sticks & Stones
By Ali Taylor
August 2011. Riots are spreading. It's summer, it's hot and the entire country is holding its breath...
As events fly out of control, a group of friends is caught in the middle. Shaken by what they see and do, their friendship is tested like never before. What will happen when life returns to normal? And what are people saying about the 'youth of today'?
Inspired and shaped by interviews with hundreds of children across the country, this explosive and thought-provoking new play invites young people to discuss what they thought about last summer's riots. Their words, opinions and stories have been woven into the action, exploring the impact of what happened and what it means to be growing up in the UK today.

Integrated Sign Language Performance Sat 6 Oct 2pm
After-show Talk Sat 13 Oct 2pm

For ages 9 -13
Tickets £8 - £12
Main Theatre
Running time TBC
Usually two performances daily Tuesday - Saturday. Please check our website www.polkatheatre.com or call Box Office on 020 8543 4888

17 October 2012 - 16 February 2013
Polka Theatre presents a macrobert and Frozen Charlotte co-production
Too Many Penguins?
How many penguins are too many penguins? Polar bear thinks one is more than enough, thank you very much!
But Penguina has other ideas... she wants someone to play with. Just one friend... well, maybe two... or three...
Squeeze into this fun theatrical experience and find out just how many penguins we can get into one space. It might get crowded but we promise that the arrival of the penguins will entertain and delight!
"A little bit of theatrical magic" The Scotsman

Too Many Penguins? Toddler Performance
Toddler performances for 1 - 2 year olds are scheduled throughout the run of the show. Early booking is strongly advised due to the reduced capacity of these performances.

For ages 1 - 4 years
Tickets £8 - £10
Adventure Theatre
Running time approximately 40 minutes with no interval
Usually two or three performances daily Tuesday - Saturday and occasional Sundays in January. Please check our website www.polkatheatre.com or call the Box Office on 020 8543 4888 for more information.

23 November 2012 - 16 February 2013
Polka Theatre presents
The Wind in the Willows
A play with songs by Toby Hulse
Based on the novel by Kenneth Grahame
"Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about on boats"
When Mole abandons spring cleaning for the delights of the riverbank, he has no idea of the adventures that lie ahead. With Toad's obsession for all things fast causing chaos (poop, poop!), it falls upon his friends Ratty, Mole and wise old Badger to save him. But that means coming face-to-face with the ferrets and weasels of the Wild Wood...
In this delightful adaptation of Kenneth Grahame's classic story of friendship and bravery, this winter warmer will take you on a journey through the seasons. A wonderfully funny tale brought to life with music, songs and the usual Polka magic!
"Traditional children's theatre at its best!" The Guardian on Charlotte's Web

After-show Talk Sat 1 Dec 2.30pm
Integrated Sign Language Performance Sat 8 Dec 2.30pm
Autism Friendly Performance Sat 5 Jan 5.30pm

For ages 5 - 11 years
Tickets £8 - £10
Main Theatre
Running time approximately 2 hours including interval
Usually two performances daily Tuesday - Saturday and occasional performances on Sundays in January. Please check our website www.polkatheatre.com or call Box Office on 020 8543 4888

30 October - 10 November 2012
Engine House and Lakeside present
Red Riding Hood
A new adaptation by Mike Kenny
A fantastical fairytale
Once upon a time there was a young girl who went to spend the night at Grandma's house... and her little brother came too! She wanted to go to sleep but he was having none of it. Grandma's attic was far too exciting for sleeping!
Join the intrepid twosome on a night to remember in Olivier award-winning writer Mike Kenny's brand new adaptation of the classic children's tale. With music and songs from Julian Butler (Charlie and Lola's Best Bestest Play) Red Riding Hood promises to delight both young people and their families.
"An imaginative treat to warm the heart" Nottingham Post
Watch With Baby Performance Sate 31 Oct 11am

For ages 4 - 7 years
Tickets £8 - £12
Main Theatre
Running time approximately 50 minutes with no interval
Two performances daily at various times please check our website www.polkatheatre.com or call Box Office on 020 8543 4888

20 February - 2 March 2013
Yellow Earth presents
Why the Lion Danced
Written by Carey English
Celebrate Chinese New Year with Yellow Earth!
Deep in the mountains of ancient China, every thirteenth moon the dreaded monster Nian pays a visit to the village. The villagers must protect themselves but which animal can save them? Come and help scare the monster away. Join young Tom and his family as they prepare for the New Year's Eve and discover the story behind the Lion Dance.
All the excitement, colour and sounds of the Chinese New Year are brought to you in this inventive production featuring live music, song and dance by Yellow Earth, the award-winning British East Asian Theatre Company.

Watch With Baby Performance Sat 21 Feb 11am

For ages 6 - 11 years
Tickets £8 - £12
Main Theatre
Running time approximately 50 minutes with no interval
Two performances daily at various times please check our website www.polkatheatre.com or call Box Office on 020 8543 4888


Sat 29 Sep & Tue 2 - Fri 5 Oct
A Thousand Cranes and artsdepot present
Little Sunshine, Little Rainfall
Meet head-gardener Little Sunshine and still-learning gardener Little Rainfall in their magical Japanese garden. When naughty Storm Fox pays a visit all the creatures in the garden must think quickly to save their homes and families. Perhaps wise old Turtle has the answer? Blending Japanese folklore with traditional music and dance this celebration of the beauty and simplicity of Japanese culture is a perfect theatrical experience for younger audiences.

For ages 3 - 7 years
Tickets £8 - £10
Adventure Theatre
Running time approximately 50 minutes with no interval
Performance times: Sat 29 11.00 & 2.05, all other days 10.35 & 2.05


Sat 6 Oct
Hand to Mouth Theatre presents
Head in the Clouds
It's a windy day when The Puppet Man arrives to put on a show. His magical hat blows away and goes on a journey giving daydreams to everyone who wears it... A gentle and entertaining performance using hand puppets and live, traditionally inspired music to create a funny and fantastic adventure of the imagination.

For ages 3 - 7 years
Tickets £8 - £10
Adventure Theatre
Running time approximately 50 minutes with no interval
Performance times: 12.30 & 2.05


Tue 19 - Sat 23 Feb 2013
The Flanagan Collective present
The William Stories
William loves books.
Polly has a secret world in the attic.
Claribel is protecting The Forest At The Centre Of The World...
Journey into a world of imagination, books, fairytales and exploring. Polka are bringing a collection of stories to the stage for the first time making a whole mythology which you can explore throughout the week. Each day will be a different story but they will all take you on an adventure whether it's with William, Polly or Claribel and open up your mind to the possibilities of storytelling and your imagination.

For ages 4 - 7 years
Tickets £8 - £10
Adventure Theatre
Running time approximately 45 minutes with no interval
Performance times: 11.05 & 2.35


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