In 2008, Punchdrunk began a groundbreaking experiment in reaching out to children, young people and the wider community with activities that focus on the innate creativity and imagination of the individual. Fran has been working with Punchdrunk Enrichment since 2009.
The Lost Lending Library
An interest in books leads a local librarian to a primary school, where they discuss literature and favourite books and stories. The discovery of a strange mysterious locked book and a shared love of the book ‘How to Live Forever’ by Colin Thompson leads to the mysterious arrival of the Lost Lending Library. 800 floors high and containing every book and story in the world, the library jumps from place to place and arrives where it knows it can meet great storywriters. Pupils at the school are guided by our guardian ‘Peabody’ through the library and are inspired to write their own stories.
Co-writer and Performer
“The Lost Lending Library has been an amazing experience for the children and a fantastic writing stimulus” Headteacher, 2014
The House Where Winter Lives
Fran co-wrote and performed in The House Where Winter Lives, an immersive storytelling adventure for children aged three to six years old.
Mr and Mrs Winter invite children to join them in their warm and welcoming cottage, as they are preparing for a winter feast. Unfortunately they’ve mislaid the key to their larder! The children join them on their journey through a secret forest to find the missing key.
From November 2012 to January 2013, Punchdrunk Enrichment transformed The Discover Children’s Story Centre in Stratford, East London, into a magical frozen forest where children and their families could explore the wonder of winter. The show had a sold out run at the Perth International Festival in February 2014.
Co-writer and Performer (Mrs Winter)
“This stunning little show is a magical achievement” The Times
“This production…leaves you totally delighted.” ☆☆☆☆ The Guardian
“The coolest kids show in town.” ☆☆☆☆ Time Out
“Sweet and almost poignantly old-fashioned…This show is definitely recommended.“” ☆☆☆☆ The Telegraph
Presented at Discover Children’s Story Centre, Stratford, East London.
Commissioned by Discover Children’s Story Centre. Funded by Arts Council England and Esmee Fairbairn Foundation.
Fran has run a number of workshops introducing participants to Punchdrunk’s work and the concept of immersive theatre practice that Punchdrunk Enrichment’s education and outreach work hinges on. Most recently Fran worked with 12 Sixth Form students over a period of two months to create devised theatre based on The Crucible by Arthur Miller and The Bloody Chamber by Angela Carter.
The Land of Kids
Punchdrunk Enrichment came to Land of Kids in May 2013 for a one-off family event in the heart of Dalston. Punchdrunk Enrichment’s Story Balloonists seek the assistance of families and kids on their latest storytelling adventure. The balloonists travel the world collecting and sharing stories, and have discovered a magical storytelling elixir, created by the eccentric botanist, Professor von Brewster. But can the balloonists pull the wool over the Professor’s eyes, and get access to this very special tonic?
Creator and Performer
Up, up and away
Up, Up and Away brought to life the tale of Marianne Montgolfier, Vincent Lunardi and Bernard Blanchard. As story balloonists they travel the world, letting the wind carry them from place to place, collecting, gathering and telling stories. Eager to spread the art of story telling and to find new imaginative storytellers, they decide they can only visit places that they know will provide them with brilliant new stories and storytellers.
Co-writer and Performer
“You don’t have to just put normal stuff in your story you can put imposssible stuff in” KS2 pupil
“It can be hard to motivate the pupils, especially as they get older. This was something exciting, and real to inspire them, and the teachers. There were lots of opportunities to motivate the pupils” Year 5/6 teacher
Under the Eiderdown
Under The Eiderdown has been igniting the imagination of primary school pupils across London since it was first piloted in January 2009. The project has been delivered in over 30 schools to date and continues to reach new participants.
The aim of the project is to develop children’s speech, language and communication skills through engagement with a story in an original and unforgettable environment. Punchdrunk transform an area in each school into the world of the chosen story, creating a completely immersive storytelling environment for pupils and staff to experience.
This project was in collaboration with Lambeth council and aimed to inspire local school children about their local history. Children were taken on an adventure around Lambeth, discovering stories about the past and meeting characters who had stories of their own to tell.
Creator and Performer
More information: punchdrunk.com/enrichment