Taking Flight Theatre Company brings the family show You’ve Got Dragons to
Shoreham’s Ropetackle on October 16 and Guildhall Studio, Portsmouth on October 20. They are offering it as a way to help parents and teachers to talk to children about mental health.
Spokeswoman Stella Patrick said: “You’ve Got Dragons is an inclusive and accessible take on Kathryn Cave’s beloved children’s book.
“Do your worries ever reach dragon-like proportions? If they do, then Taking Flight think they have just the show for you. A poignant, insightful story about coping with your dragons and learning to face anxieties from an award-winning picture book writer.
“Based on the children’s book of the same name, You’ve Got Dragons is billed as a delightful tale for young children, their families and carers.
“You’ve Got Dragons is a fully accessible, intergenerational show featuring creative captioning, British Sign Language and audio description. It is a treat for the whole family. With live, original music, this highly visual, sensitive production is a humorous and touching exploration of the dragons we all face.”
Director Elise Davidson said: “I’d adapted one of Kathryn’s books before and after we first met she sent me You’ve Got Dragons as a suggestion to put on the stage.
“The book completely hit home with me and it felt like the perfect story for Taking Flight to take on. I’d never formally adapted a book before so I worked with Samuel Bees (who is also in the show) to create the play.
“Suffering from poor mental health throughout my life and having a child with anxiety, some of the scenes in the play were very much based on personal experience.
“So many parents have said that the scenes about bedtime struck a particular chord with them as well. For me it was about providing a vocabulary for parents and teachers to talk to children about mental health in a way that wasn’t scary and wasn’t taboo.
“I was very conscious that this play wasn’t going to change the world but it might just start some conversations that needed to happen. That’s why we invested so much in developing the dragons taming workshops. We wanted to provide more practical suggestions to help families work together to tame their dragons and to help everyone to start talking about mental health in the same way we talk about physical health.”
You’ve Got Dragons has previously toured England and Wales and was shortlisted for a Fantastic For Families Award: “This 2019 tour of England is funded by Arts Council England and house theatre. house supports venues by improving the range, quality and scale of theatre presented across South East and East England and exists to build the audience for contemporary theatre across the region. It does this by supporting venues and artists to develop audiences and by helping to create a long-term infrastructure for touring. It is delivered by Farnham Maltings with support from Arts Council England and was established in 2012.
Producer Beth House said: “‘We’ve had such wonderful feedback on our previous tours. Families have said that the show works for all generations and that their children we’re completely mesmerised. Parents are impressed that we are able to tackle the issues around childhood mental health with such a lightness of touch.”