Entrancing Shakespeare for tots at Warwick Arts Centre

A TODDLER-friendly take on a Shakespearean tragicomedy is coming to Warwick Arts Centre this month.

While the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford prepares to run its new production of The Winter’s Tale, it has also teamed up with Oily Cart, which specialises in theatre for the very young, to bring In a Pickle - an interactive and multi-sensory version of the play - to two to five-year-olds.

An entrancing tale combining smells, textures, enchanting live music and colourful costumes, the adventure begins in the woolly pastures of the shepherdess and her flock of little sheep.

She is having a party to celebrate the sheep shearing. When she discovers a lost baby, the audience is called on to help solve the clues about where the baby comes from. Together they travel over the salty sea to the sad court where a happy ending is found.

Toddlers first experienced In a Pickle - the title of which comes from a quote in Shakespeare’s The Tempest - at the World Shakespeare Festival during the summer.

Tim Webb, artistic director of Oily Cart, said: “Yes, it’s a challenge but one we’re revelling in.

“The original music derives directly from the musicality of Shakespeare’s language, as the young children and, as the performers journey together through a dreamscape, they will find something to delight all of the senses.

“This is not another of those shows you look at and listen to. It’s one you can touch, smell and taste.”

The show will be on at Warwick Arts Centre from January 14 to 19. For tickets, call 024 7652 4524 or visit www.warwickartscentre.co.uk