Celebrating 30 years
Read our stories from 30 years of make believing here.
A BRIEF HISTORY
1984: Travelling Light is founded by Kim Reuter and Jinny Paige. DOWN AT THE DUMP is their first show
1991: STREETWISE performs at an international festival in Poland, followed by a tour of 5 Polish cities
1995: Our most toured show, TIR NA N'OG is created and is shown at the Take Off Festival. It subsequently tours 8 times all over the world and is retitled INTO THE WEST for a mid-scale tour in 1999 and 2015.
2001: Our first youth theatre groups are started in Barton Hill with support from Community at Heart
2002: WALKING THE TIGHTROPE by Mike Kenny performs at Phladelphia International Children's Festival, and represents the UK at the ASSITEJ 14th World Congress in Seoul
2003: CLOUDLAND is our first successful play for young children and is so popular its tour is extended twice
2004: CLOWN is our first co-production with Bristol Old Vic, and our first piece of wordless theatre for young children
2007: THE UGLY DUCKLING is our first co-production with the Tobacco Factory Theatres, and our first family Christmas show
2008: We create SHADOW PLAY, our first piece of abstract, non-verbal theatre for very young children
2009: We create our first dance theatre piece HOW COLD MY TOES with Champloo Dance Company
2010: BOING! premieres at Bristol Old Vic; it is remounted several times in forthcoming years, including tours to China and New York in 2017 & 2018.
2011: Our Young Critics programme is launched, and we create CINDERELLA: A FAIRYTALE with Tobacco Factory Theatres, which is remounted for London runs for the next 2 Christmases, plus tours to Birmingham in 2015 and back to its Bristol home in 2016.
2012: PARALLELS is our first short film, made with our 7-10 Youth Theatre for a part of our Summer Showcase at Arnolfini.
2013: VITA is our first production as part of The Buzz, made entirely by young people with the support of professional mentors. Both BOING! and WHITE CAPS are invited to showcase at British Dance Edition. VARMINTS is our first dance collaboration with Sadler's Wells, East London Dance and Stratford Circus
2014: We celebrate our 30th anniversary with a free family arts festival in Barton Hill - 30Fest. Our Christmas co-production 101 DALMATIANS with Tobacco Factory Theatre’s breaks box office records and has rave reviews from press and audience alike.
2015: We create SNOW MOUSE, our first co-production with the egg theatre, Bath. Our youth theatre's co-production with the Bristol Old Vic, A THOUSAND SEASONS PAST, is a site specific historical drama piece telling the stories of inhabitants of the Old Bristol Goal at Wapping Wharf. We take our first show to Edinburgh Fringe Festival, STRICTLY BALTI.
2016: We embark on our first Libraries tour with THE MYSTERIOUS VANISHMENT OF POBBY & DINGAN.
2017: We produce BARTON HILL FESTIVAL, a celebration of our local community developed through community consultation, with over 23 local organisations taking part. We secure 3 year funding from the Youth Investment Fund, to develop our young people's programme and launch new projects ACTIONSPEAK and OUTREACH.
2018: Our latest co-production with Bristol Old Vic IGLOO, is a sensory experience for the very young, 0-3 years.
Awards & Honours
1998 Nomination for TIR NA N'OG - best show for children & young people (Barclays / TMA Awards)
1999 Samuel Beckett award for INTO THE WEST - best children's production (Dublin International Theatre Festival)
2005 Association of International Theatre Critics award for CLOWN - best acting (Bucharest International Children's Theatre Festival)
2013 Nomination for CINDERELLA: A FAIRYTALE - best entertainment and family (Olivier Awards)
2013 Cath Greig MBE (employee 1997 - 2014) - for services to theatre for young people in Bristol (New Year's Honours List)
2013 Jude Merrill MBE (employee 1987 - 2017) - for services to theatre for children (Queen's Birthday Honours List)
2014 Offie award for CINDERELLA: A FAIRYTALE - best production for young people (Off West End Awards)
2016: BOING! wins the Offie award for best production for young people (0-7)
2017: Outgoing Artistic Producer Jude Merrill wins the Action for Children's Arts Members Award in recognition of her contribution to Theatre for Young Audiences.
AND THE STORY CONTINUES . . .
The Pink Panther
Our original pink van