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What would you do if you hatched out of an egg only to discover you looked nothing like your brothers and sisters, or even your mother? Imagine if everyone laughed at you because you were different! Well, that's exactly what happens to the ugly duckling in Finger and Thumb Theatre's new show.

"The Ugly Duckling" (commissioned by Junction in Goole, East Riding of Yorkshire) features the trademark hand shadow puppetry of international shadowgrapher Drew Colby (Finger and Thumb Theatre) in collaboration with Newcastle-based cellist Penny Callow. Inspired by the well-known Hans Christian Andersen tale, this visual performance uses new hand shadow techniques, beautiful light scapes, whimsical humour and glorious live music (including some popular pieces of swan music by Tchaikovsky and Saint-Saëns) to tell the story. Even everyday objects including plastic spoons and kitchen colanders are pressed into service in imaginative ways in front of the lights to create glistening fish, turtles and dramatic weather changes! In the end it turns out the “duckling” is not really a “duckling” at all – and after many adventures in which he encounters dogs and cats and snakes and rats (and even a crazy old lady) he finds his true place in the world. This is a magical show for the whole family, with skilful puppetry, fun characters and lots of laughs.

Duration: 50 minutes

Suitability: All ages 4+

Space Required: 3 metres wide, 4 metres deep, 3 metres high 


“Clever, entertaining, exciting, awesome, funny”Children at preview performance

 “Very skilful” – David Wheeler, IOU Theatre

“Belle (daughter) and Rich (husband) loved the show, said it was really great and the workshop too. They had a fab afternoon.” – Lucy Phillips, East Riding Mums

"I saw a workshop at a school and a public show and thought both were excellent. They engaged well with all the children. To keep an audience from 3 to 70 engaged and entertained – at times squealing with delight – was no mean feat. The puppetry was inventive, the storytelling accomplished and the music fantastic." - Ellen Thorpe, Blaize

"A brand new take on the Ugly Duckling story by virtuoso @FingerNthumb! What a visual treat!" - Take Kids to Theatre

About Junction
Drew Colby
Penny Callow

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