Arcola Creative Engagement

London Grimm

Joseph Charlton, Cheryl Walker and Annie Jenkins

Directed by: Laura Rolinson, Cheryl Walker and Ross Crosby


“Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.” 

― Neil Gaiman

Taking inspiration from classic children’s fairy tales, the dark moral stories we tell children to teach them life lessons,  Arcola Youth Theatre have worked with three professional writers and theatre makers to give these tales an urgent, relevant makeover. Alive with mystery, these tales of good and bad, light and dark, right and wrong are still as urgent today as in their original form.

Croydon Tales by Joseph Charlton and performed by AYT Monday.

Once upon a time in Croydon, Hansel and Gretel strayed into an illegal rave, Snow White had more followers on Instagram than the wicked older girls in sixth form, and Little Red Riding Hood made the mistake of going for a drive with wolfish school bad-boy Tommy. Not everyone lived happily ever after.

Tinderella and the Beast by Cheryl Walker and performed by AYT Tuesday

When Beauty can’t find her Beast, and Snow White is recruited by a Fairy God Agent, Cinderella must use any means necessary to escape the evil clutches of the Queen; a mission which leads everyone to… Calais?

Sing a Song of Silence by Annie Jenkins and performed by AYT Wednesday.

It’s 2022, and as teen twin global sensations Claire and Carl take to the stage as the closing act of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee concert they miss their cue to start singing…

In a world that eschews morals in favour of the privatisation of everything, this re-imagining of Rumpelstilskin demonstrates that even family comes at a price. Are children really our future when money is the greatest love of all?

Please note: all three plays will be performed each night with a brief interval between the second and third play. The order is subject to change.