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creating possibilities for disabled children

The image shows the puppet Bird, held by Patience approach one of our young audience members who reaches out to touch the feathers on Bird's head.

“A truly engaging, sensory performance.  Can’t praise this enough!” Priory Woods School, Donna Hawkins

We are delighted to be re-touring Pulse to schools from 11th March – 3rd May 2024.

Join Patience, Buddy and Zach who are waiting for rain in the dusty, dry heat of the American Dust Bowl.

Patience lives in a shack next to the railroad, emptying dust out of bowls meant for water. A train passes… travelling to a distant place. Patience’s friend Bird visits for a few crumbs from her pocket.

Same thing yesterday, same thing today…

Only today is different. Clanky Jane arrives with the ‘Cloud-O-Matic’. Patience, Zach and Buddy help Clanky Jane to activate the machine with crazy percussion, and a little bit of magic.

Featuring live music with tactile vibrations, alongside pre-recorded sound, plus captivating visual effects, puppetry, and a sprinkling of water, Pulse will immerse your children in a safe, engaging and atmospheric adventure.

Our team facilitate gentle 1:1 interaction with our audience members, presenting an array of sensory props and natural materials which are brought up close for our audience, creating possibilities for engagement. We provide high levels of focussed attention and are lead by our audience’s responses, tailoring the performance for their individual needs.

“The students each gained new experiences from the show, personalised to their level and it was wonderful to be given the opportunity to sit back and simply observe. A BIG thank you … a truly special event”. Addington School, S. L. Margel

Please note this film shows a relaxed family performance in a theatre setting rather than our intimate in-school performances.

About Bamboozle’s shows for disabled audiences with complex needs:

Pulse is an intimate show for just 6 children and is specifically designed for children who might be described as having profound and multiple learning disabilities, along with their family groups or teachers and support staff.

Performances are tailored to each child’s needs by a team of Bamboozle performers who are highly experienced in adapting to, and interacting with, children and young people who have a variety of complex needs.

What you need to know

These shows are particularly suitable for children who use a wheelchair.

Floor space required: 11m x 6m x 3m high minimum. Bamboozle’s requires exclusive use of the space for the duration of our visit.

Information on our audience numbers and performance times coming soon.

Booking fee: £1149+VAT

Recommended age range: 6 – 14 years.

Our productions designed for disabled audiences with complex needs have often been enjoyed by older teenagers and young adults, and may be suitable for some younger audience members. We can look at catering for these different age ranges by prior arrangement.

To register your interest, please complete are Expression of Interest Form or if you have any questions, email jade@bamboozletheatre.co.uk. Thank you.

If you would like a show that has been specifically designed to cater for the needs of autistic children, please take a look at our autism specific productions.

Shows a collage image with a blue river flowing through green meadow with orange flowers with a dragonfly hovering over the river

About the show:

The River is Bamboozle’s newest show for students who might be described as having profound and multiple learning disabilities (PMLD).

Join us on a journey from the river’s source in the mountains as it flows downstream. Along the way you will encounter the river’s lively residents from an energetic salmon swimming against the current, a stately heron in her nest, a playful otter, dragonflies emerging from under the surface, and perhaps even spot an elusive Kingfisher!

You’ll meet a water goddess who brings mystical otherworldly music to the ferryman at work in his boat.  A storyteller weaves together these moments along the rivers journey towards the ocean.

The show features an array of textures, from rippling silks to grassy bull rushes. Reflected light and water play at the start of the show conjure up the river’s source.

You will experience a variety of live music; instruments with tactile vibrations, alongside pre-recorded sound which create layers of atmosphere. Songs and sounds in the show range from evoking a jaunty playfulness on the surface to the strange eeriness of the under-water world.

About Bamboozle’s shows for disabled audiences with complex needs:

The River is an intimate show for just 6 children and is specifically designed for children who might be described as having profound and multiple learning disabilities, along with their family groups or teachers and support staff.

Performances are tailored to each child’s needs by a team of Bamboozle performers who are highly experienced in adapting to, and interacting with, children and young people who have a variety of complex needs.

“The most beautiful sensory spectacle! Everything from the music, puppetry and scenery was completely captivating and spellbinding. Watching our pupils immersed in the experience and the joy in their faces was utterly magical. It met all the sensory needs of our pupils with PMLD, I only wished it could have lasted another hour!” Hannah O-Mara, Birch Wood School

What you need to know:

These shows are particularly suitable for children who use a wheelchair.

We’re able to provide up to 4 x 40 minute performances throughout the school day. Each show for a maximum group of 6 children.

Floor space required: 11m x 6m x 3m high minimum. Bamboozle’s requires exclusive use of the space for the duration of our visit.

If your school is located in a Levelling Up For Culture area in the Midlands or North East regions, please email jade@bamboozletheatre.co.uk to find out about our limited number of subsidised places available.

Recommended age range: 6 – 14 years.

Our productions designed for disabled audiences with complex needs have often been enjoyed by older teenagers and young adults, and may be suitable for some younger audience members. We can look at catering for these different age ranges by prior arrangement.

If you would like a show that has been specifically designed to cater for the needs of autistic children, please take a look at our autism specific productions. Our production Storm is set to tour to schools in November 2023.

The Backyard: The Wildings

“The Wildings has been created for autistic children & young people. It is a beautifully inclusive natural space, where the whole family can relax, explore and express themselves in an environment that is playful, and free from judgement or expectation.” – Dawn Bowden, Bamboozle Artist

 

The Wildings is as experience which we developed at The Bamboozle Backyard – a wildlife plot on an allotment site in Leicester. It is an oasis of calm and creativity waiting to be explored and brought to life during The Wildings sessions. The Wildings are sessions led by Bamboozle artists where the family can escape the busyness and stresses of modern life and take a breath.

“Instant relaxation!  Anxiety ebbs away rapidly. The magic of the location, and the wonderful people involved are a magical combination. Like walking into a daydream!”  Vicky Davies, parent.

During these sessions, you and your child will be encouraged to relax and recharge alongside the artists, who will skilfully provide a safe and engaging space to explore the natural elements within the site.

Each session will be organic in the way it develops and will be age-appropriate and child-led. The artists will pretend to be quirky characters with whom the children can choose to engage with, and explore ideas and activities. They can make potions, float stones or make mud soup!

The children can, if they choose to, follow their own ideas within a playful, fun environment.

This experience has recently been adapted for Festival settings and Forest School environments. If you’d like to enquire about bringing The Wildings to your outdoor space, please email info@bamboozletheatre.co.uk.

We continue to run FREE Wildings sessions for families at our Bamboozle Backyard in Leicester during certain school holidays.

>> To find out more and our current availability, please click here.

Would you like to get a postcard from the Backyard?

During the Winter months when we aren’t able to run our Backyard sessions in person, we’re sending a bit of Backyard to your home!

>> Join our Hibernation Series activities here.

Thank you to our funders!

The Might Creatives’ Creative Community Fund

Originally created with investment from The D’Oyly Carte Charitable Trust

Re-Wilding Characters you might meet

                 Aurora Sue                                    Mac George                                        Little Wing

               Aurora Dawn                                     Tayosong                                            Grace          

The audience gathers. The music swells.  The mist swirls.  Anticipation.  Then arriving in the playground the full-grown Firebird.  Its five-metre wingspan hovers above the audience, circling, swooping and diving.

Based on the myths and legends of the Phoenix, this spectacular new production promises to bring an unforgettable experience into your school grounds or outdoor space. If you’d like to arrange a visit full of unique Bamboozle puppetry, comic characters and live music – including a chicken jazz band! – please get in touch.

Our Firebird tour has come to an end for 2022, however the show is available for one-off or multiple bookings. Please email info@bamboozletheatre.co.uk for further details.

Watch our Firebird trailer:

Which of my students will the show be suitable for and how many can access it?

Who is it suitable for? This show is devised for a wide range of learning-disabled students, including those sometimes described as SLD, MLD and some students on the autistic spectrum.  While it is not specifically designed for those described as PMLD there will be Bamboozle’s customary mix of sensory possibilities, this will be more suitable for PMLD students who respond to sound, as there will be a lot of live and recorded music.

Who is it not suitable for? We will be working within Covid restriction guidance, so will not be able to offer close-up interactions in person.  This will limit the possibilities for students described as PMLD who are visually impaired, though, as above, it will suit those who respond to sound. It is not suitable for those on the Autistic Spectrum who need to be able to move around freely nor for those with the sort of challenging behaviour that makes it difficult to guarantee calm observance of boundaries.  This is because the actors will need to remain socially distanced from the audience. In addition: The Firebird and other puppets/props cannot be touched in the way Bamboozle shows normally accommodate for both Covid secure reasons and to avoid any unintentional damage.

How many can experience it? The show is designed to play to four class bubbles of any size.  The climax of the production takes place outdoors, with all four class bubbles watching at the same time, so there must be a suitable outdoor space, large enough for you to safely distance the class bubbles.

What happens if it rains?

The performance will go ahead unless the Bamboozle team judge the weather to be so severe that it poses a safety risk. Therefore the school will need to ensure pupils have warm clothing, wet weather gear and umbrellas available to cope with the British summer!  If you have a covered outdoor area, then we can also work with you to see how we could stage the performance such that the audience can stand under cover if the rains come.

This sounds great, what else do I need to know?

This experience is a unique one and will be different in each school, we will need to work closely with you to plan where and when each part of the action will unfold, please read The Firebird in your School to understand more about how the experience is likely to work across a school day.

More information

Download the Firebird – Companion Pack for Teachers Summer 2022

 

Join Betty, Doris and Arthur as they explore the textures, smells and tastes of their World War II allotment. You’ll be visited by a mischievous mole and will escape to a magical and relaxing forest, where you’ll encounter bees buzzing around their hives.

Made especially for young audiences described as having profound and multiple learning disabilities, this multi sensory show creates a welcoming and enchanting world with music, puppetry and lots of invitations to take part in immersive interaction.

Bamboozle are delighted to be touring this especially adapted show, which ensures that individual attention is given to every audience member. The production has been carefully designed to fully accommodate social distancing and make sure that all interactive elements are delivered in a Covid-safe way.

 

“A magical, relaxing experience” Andrea, parent

“A lovely experience to bring us together in such strange times. Safe, inclusive and such a pleasure” Sam, parent

“Ingenious, refreshing, uplifting” Kate, parent

 

Running time 45-55 mins

Age recommendation: We usually recommend an age range of 6 to 14 years for the show, though it has often been enjoyed by older teenagers and young adults and may be suitable for some younger audience members, we think families are best able to judge this themselves.

 

Watch this space for the announcement of further dates.

More information

Down to Earth Outdoor – Belgrave Hall – Guide and FAQs

Down to Earth Companion Pack for Teachers and Support Staff

 

Photo of Bamboozle's PMLD production Makara and the Mountain Dragon

“Amazing and beautifully paced. Actors gave students enough time to process and interact in their own ways. Very inclusive. It was beautiful to see how students enjoyed it. Thank you!”. Alex, Brookfields School

In a land where dragons are more than myths, we meet Makara – a girl who is different – a girl who has wings. Makara wants to learn how to fly.

A dragon’s egg – the first in a thousand years – is about to hatch. It is Makara’s destiny to return the young dragon to where it belongs. The mountains are calling. The mountain dragon is waiting.

About Makara and the Mountain Dragon

Makara and the Mountain Dragon is Bamboozle’s newest production designed for young audiences who might be described as having profound and multiple learning disabilities, and toured to UK schools in December 2019 and January 2020. The development of the show was supported by the Garfield Weston Foundation and Arts Council England.

About Bamboozle’s shows for disabled audiences with complex needs

Makara and the Mountain Dragon is an intimate show for just 6 children and is specifically designed for children who might be described as having profound and multiple learning disabilities, along with their family groups or teachers and support staff.

Performances are tailored to each child’s needs by a team of Bamboozle performers who are highly experienced in adapting to, and interacting with, children and young people who have a variety of complex needs.

The show is particularly suitable for children who use a wheelchair.

“The most beautiful sensory spectacle! Everything from the music, puppetry and scenery was completely captivating and spellbinding. Watching our pupils immersed in the experience and the joy in their faces was utterly magical. It met all the sensory needs of our pupils with PMLD, I only wished it could have lasted another hour!” Hannah O-Mara, Birch Wood School

“A fantastic experience for both staff and pupils! All pupils were appropriately engaged and their needs had been thought about and catered for. Some pupils who are very difficult to engage usually, chose to engage with the specialist props/musical elements. Wonderful to see how the performance was adapted dependent on needs of children with very complex needs. An emotional experience for staff – we were blown away! Thank you!” Lucy Naylor, Sunningdale School

What you need to know

The production uses a number of sensory elements, including aromas of essential oils (these are not applied directly to the skin) and the scent of Lapsang Souchong tea. The production also includes moments of loud music.

Recommended age range: 6 – 14 years

Further information and resources

Watch a short film about the show

See an example programme for the show

Listen to an example audio programme

Makara and the Mountain Dragon Companion Pack for Teachers and Support Staff

 

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