Olivier Award-winning actress Sara Kestelman will star in a new adaptation of Moomin creator Tove Jansson’s magical novel The Summer Book as part of the Unicorn Theatre’s forthcoming summer season.
Directed by Douglas Rintoul and adapted by Jemma Kennedy, the tale about six-year-old Sophia and her grandmother, who while away the summer months on a remote island in Finland, will play at the venue from 7 to 29 June.
Kestleman, who won a coveted Olivier Award for her performance in 1994’s Cabaret, returns to the London stage following appearances in productions including Torch Song Trilogy at the Menier Chocolate Factory, Making Noise Quietly at the Donmar Warehouse and Hamlet at the National Theatre.
Billed as “a perfect summer show for grandchildren, grandparents and everyone in between”, The Summer Book will be staged to mark the 100th anniversary of Jansson’s birth.
The show, which is suitable for children aged six and older, is just one of the exciting family productions to play at the London Bridge venue later this year.
Contemporary dance show Chalk About, which is suitable for ages eight and older, will play on 16 and 17 May. It offers a playful, funny and sometimes moving look at how we view ourselves and others around us.
Continuing the dancing theme, O Snap, an exploration of friendship and loyalty from choreographer Erik Kaiel, will play on 22 and 23 May. Suitable for ages 13 and older, the production brings together three young dancers to communicate the explosive passion of youth and what it takes to find your place in the world.
From 24 to 29 May, renowned Dutch company Het Filiaal will present The Secret Of Q, a playful and inventive show about health of safety gone mad that combines cameras, puppets, models and projections.
Returning to the Unicorn Theatre for a second year, 1001 Nights will play from 5 to 22 June. Based on The Arabian Nights, the show tells the tale of a young girl torn between her home in Syria and her new life in the UK. Directed by Rintoul, the production sees Shaharazad take audiences into a fantastical world of kings, viziers and jinns on a magic carpet she makes from an old mop.
If that isn’t enough to keep the kids entertained over the summer months, the theatre will also hold a series of new drama workshops for ages 8 to 12. Play In A Week will offer participants the chance to work with a professional director and explore everything from acting to script writing. The week-long courses will culminate in a performance for friends and family on the Unicorn’s main stage.