The Children's Touring Partnership presents

Running Wild

By Michael Morpurgo
In a new adaptation by
Samuel Adamson
Originally produced by
Chichester Festival Theatre and
Regent's Park Theatre

Festival Theatre
Family Friendly
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A winner. The puppetry is exquisite, with full-sized animals manipulated so they seem to breathe with documentary life. The magic really hits you

Daily Telegraph

Following a hugely successful run at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, Running Wild returns home to Chichester before a national tour. Originated by Chichester Festival Youth Theatre at Cass Sculpture Foundation, Michael Morpurgo’s story of love, loss, loyalty and living for the moment won a prestigious UK Theatre Award.

For Lilly, going to Indonesia isn’t just another holiday with mum. It’s a new start, and the chance to ride an elephant called Oona. But then the tsunami hit.

Charging deep into the jungle, Oona escapes the danger of the beach with her young rider desperately clinging on. Miles from civilisation, at first there’s wonder, discovery and tree-top adventures amongst the orang-utans. But, as thoughts turn to mum left behind, wild tigers prowl, hunger hits, and Lilly must now learn to survive the rainforest. Then come the hunters.

Michael Morpurgo's novel, based on a true story, is brought to lush life with extraordinary heart, vibrant colour and exceptional creativity, wowing audiences of all ages and critics alike.

Directed by Timothy Sheader and CFT’s Director of LEAP Dale Rooks, with puppetry design and direction by Finn Caldwell and Toby Olié, both previous Associate Puppetry Directors on War Horse , this epic and spectacular production tells an emotional and moving story of love, loss, loyalty and of living for the moment.

PROLOGUE tickets on sale
from 10 January



A winner. The puppetry is exquisite, with full-sized animals manipulated so they seem to breathe with documentary life. And as the sun goes down over Regent’s Park and Paul Anderson’s atmospheric lighting kicks in, the magic really hits you


A role-swapping, puppet-wielding cast…team together to offer vivid suggestions of both the danger and beauty of this tropical wilderness…remarkable by its inventive, evocative staging


It’s a crowdpleaser, mainly thanks to inspiring and energetic staging, namely some amazing puppet animals...brought to beautifully articulated life. This fairy-lit stage in Regent’s Park is one of the prettiest theatres in the world, and deserves to be on everyone’s summer night bucket list


What an audacious and imaginative start this is to the season....stylishly directed by Timothy Sheader and Dale Rooks. And those puppets are things of never-ending beauty


This absorbing visual feast gradually develops from a lost-in-the-jungle survival story into a morality tale that pitches a brave child against murderous poachers intent on killing endangered wildlife for profit. The animals, all magnificent life-size puppets designed by Finn Caldwell and Toby Olié, are played with tender warmth and humour by their 'handlers', with Oona the elephant exuding charm and courage


Beautifully realised and modulated...the puppet-work is fantastic…and other touches from directors Timothy Sheader and Dale Rooks were dazzling: the sung music effects of the sea from the chorus and the patter of rain, the huge blue material that represented the tsunami and enveloped the audience at one point took my breath away. A brilliant, life-affirming show




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Age Guidance 
Ages 8+
Running Time
2 hours including the interval