To find out more about Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2017 and the spotlights, please see the introductory article.
Next up in our Spotlight feature is The Tales of Peter Rabbit and Jemima Puddle-Duck, which plays Edinburgh Festival from 5 – 26 August 2017. I caught up with actor Michelle Todd:
Describe your show in three words.
Charming, Melodic, Imaginative.
Is this your first Edinburgh Fringe performance experience?
This is my first Fringe Festival and my first time in Edinburgh so I’m hoping to make some happy memories and lots of new friends.
How do you feel to be performing at Underbelly Circus Hub?
Excited as the venue looks to have lots of period charm which is perfect for the Beatrix Potter stories.
Who or what are your inspirations?
I am continually inspired by the versatility of some of my favourite actors and singers such as Carolyn Sampson, Juliet Stevensen, Harriet Walter, Phyllis Logan and Audra McDonald.
What is your secret to surviving the intense, fast pace of the fringe?
A good nights sleep and comfortable shoes to rush around seeing everything on my wish list!
What are the future plans for your show?
I am hoping to tour the show to both traditional and non-traditional venues.
It was originally composed for full symphony orchestra and the composer (Stephen McNeff) has made a new smaller instrumentation version especially for the Fringe Festival. This new “Edinburgh” version is perfect for touring and also a great introduction for young audiences to see and hear orchestral instruments.
I have already performed the show with full symphony orchestra in UK and Canada, also the chamber music version with the City of London Sinfonia at Cadogan Hall.
What is the best production you have seen this year – can be any genre, style, in any theatre or performance space?
Peter Pan at the National Theatre. I loved the imaginative staging and the actors made wonderful bold acting choices. I enjoyed watching the reactions of the children sitting around me because my own one-woman show is also geared towards young audiences. It was great research chatting to some of them afterwards.
Is there anything else you want to highlight about your show/ theatre company/ production?
I perform with just a few props so the children can use their imagination as the story unfolds. Having live instruments on stage but yet so close to the children will hopefully intrigue and inspire them to want to have a go and learn to play. Perhaps even make them keen to attend more live music performances.
Writer: Beatrix Potter, adapted by Adrian Mitchell
Producer: Jimmy Jewell Ltd.
Design: Stephen McNeff (music)
Cast: Michelle Todd and the Children’s Classic Concerts Festival Ensemble
The Tales of Peter Rabbit and Jemima Puddle-Duck plays Underbelly Circus Hub as part of Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2017 from 5 – 26 August 2017. For more information or to book tickets, please visit the website.