On Saturday, The Derby Lots for Tots Editor - Laura, and her young family went to Derby Arena to see the best Panto around; Sleeping Beauty!
The Arena had once again been cleverly transformed into a fabulous theatre with tiered seating at the back and a ginormous glittering stage. The whole performance was a visual feast - a rainbow of light, luxurious costumes and sparkling scenery. The dialogue was clever and appealed to both children and grown ups. I particularly enjoyed the music and song choices - the cast all had excellent voices and harmonised really well - creating a really emotional atmosphere when they sang (Snow Patrol's 'Run' was particularly good).
My children really enjoyed the show and my 6yr old actually made himself hoarse from shouting too much 'it's behind you' etc. One of his favourite bits was being sprayed with water (me not so much - it was only a tiny bit of water I know!). Both really want to go and see it AGAIN!
Car parking at the Arena is £3 per car (unless prebooked). There is a full bar and you can get sweets and popcorn before the show and during the interval.
It is a long performance for little people so mine were ready for the interval and having seen other people eating were on a countdown for popcorn after the first 45 mins. Our performance was at 1.30 and we left the Arena at 4.30, but it actually didn't feel that long and they were surprised it was dark outside when it was time to go home!
Sleeping Beauty, is on at Derby Arena until Sat 8 Jan. Tickets are still available.
Production Images: Pamela Raith Photography
Coming to Derby Arena in 2022 - Aladdin!
Let Derby LIVE and Little Wolf Entertainment whisk you away for Christmas to the town of Shangri-La where the sorcerers are sinister, the caves full of surprises and the genies have been bottling things up for a bit.
Aladdin will be on stage at Derby Arena from Fri 9 Dec 2022 to Sat 31 Dec 2022 with new, lower-priced tickets starting at £18 for adults, £16 for children and a new under 5s price of just £10 for any performance.
Concessions, group, school and family tickets are available. Discounted early-bird tickets are on sale now, offering a saving of £2 when you book by 31 May 2022, helping you plan next year’s festive treat.
They also have a number of special access performances available:
It’s never too early to secure the best seats for next year’s festive family treat. Call the Sales and Information Centre on 01332 255800, pick seats online at derbylive.co.uk, or book in person at the Sales and Information Centre, Riverside Chambers, Full Street, Derby.
On Saturday I took my family along to the Derby Market Place Indoor Theatre to see the latest Babbling Vagabonds Storytelling Theatre Christmas show; 'The Hungry Troll's Christmas Dinner' - A tale of trolls, dinner ladies, and yummy scrummy food.
It was a wet soggy and windy day but inside the theatre we were warm and dry. The actors in the show moved amongst the seats before the performance - chatting to the audience who were arriving and settling down into their seats. The Market Place bar sold drinks and sweets / snacks for the performance and there were toilets and hand washing facilities too.
Once the performance began it was the usual high quality Babbling Vagabonds Performance you'd expect to see if they were back in the Guildhall - lots of singing, shadow puppets, clever jokes that appeal to children as well as parents, and imaginative and creative set changes!
Arthur, aged 6, said 'It was good - I thought the troll was whiffy' and, not wanting to spoil the plot, his favourite part was the perilous bit when one of the kiddlies was nearly made into dinner!
Eve, age 9 - 'I loved how the characters played different roles and did different parts' and 'I liked the brussel sprout jokes'. She also liked getting a drink at the bar in the Market place outside as she felt 'grown up' (note: it was a soft drink!).
As a parent, I have been bringing my children to see the Babbling Vagabonds Christmas Show since they were very small, in fact Arthur has been going since he was a only few months old - it's become part of our families tradition of Christmas! This show did not disappoint and was the perfect length of time for wriggly bottoms!
You can get your tickets now by visiting the Derby LIVE website.
Running Time: 1 hour 15 minutes (No Interval)
Production Photos Credit: I C Things Photography
In a purpose built indoor theatre space outside the Guildhall Theatre in Derby Market Place - Let the Babbling Vagabonds share with you a heart warming story for all the family to remember. A tale of trolls, dinner ladies, and yummy scrummy food.
When a strange new dinner lady turns up to school the kids are going to get served up more than a plateful of trouble. Wait until they discover what's really on the menu for their school Christmas dinner! Puppets, storytelling, shadows and song, all thrown into the mixing bowl to make the perfect cosy Christmas.
The origins of this tale comes from the ideas of school children. The Babbling Vagabonds held a workshop several years ago and one class came up with such a good story they knew that they had to retell it some day.
You can get your tickets now by visiting the DerbyLIVE website.
Running Time: 1 hour 15 minutes (No Interval)
Presented by Tall Stories
The Snow Dragon
Wednesday 15 - Friday 31 December 2021
Derby Theatre Studio
Derby Theatre is delighted to be partnering with Tall Stories this Christmas to present their ever popular festive production of The Snow Dragon.
Billy has everything a young goat could need – and more besides. On New Year’s Eve, Billy is looking forward to the annual visit of the legendary Snow Dragon, who will bring him even more goodies...
Toe-tapping songs and lots of laughs for everyone aged 3 and up, from the company that brought you The Gruffalo and The Snail and the Whale.
Running Time is 55 mins
Tickets are from £13 (concessions available)
Book at: www.derbytheatre.co.uk/snow-dragon-christmas-2021
Food Exploration Revolution
Who would have thought that simply letting children play with food would help them become healthy eaters in the future.
A child’s experience of feeding and eating starts from birth and constantly evolves during the early years. When they use their senses to explore food they learn what they like and don’t like without the pressure of needing to eat it. That process of familiarisation is key to them being more willing to try new foods.
Finding time to do this at home can be a challenge… and stressful! The eating environment however has a big impact on a child’s relationship with food and the more relaxed the eating space the more they enjoy their food.
There are a number of ways that you can introduce food play with your child:
1. Involve them in the cooking of the meal, e.g. give them something to squish, mix or roll.
2. Allow them to make some selections for themselves and try to not to actively encourage them to eat certain foods with rewards or pudding.
3. Try, just for a while, not to worry too much about waste, a little waste now will prevent a lot more food waste in the future.
Healthy Intuition offers Little Food Explorer classes that are perfect for introducing your
child to a wide variety of foods… and having fun with it! A great chance to connect with other parents about feeding and food choices as well as letting us take care of the mess!
Classes are held at:
Rolleston Scout HQ (Monday mornings) DE13 9AB
Hill Street Children’s Centre (Tuesday afternoons) DE15 9LD
East Staffordshire Children’s Centre (Thursday mornings) DE14 2NJ
Mobile Phone: 07951514666
Festive Derby comes back to light next month with the return of a live stage show at a new city centre location to mark the official Christmas lights switch on.
This year, all the action will happen on a bespoke stage outside the Council House in Corporation Street on Saturday 13 November, due to the ongoing programme at the Derby Loves You venue at Derby Market Place.
Corporation Street will be closed to traffic, so everyone will have the space to Do the Right Thing for Derby and distance from each other while they enjoy the entertainment, as well as getting a better view of the Christmas lights as they are switched on!
Final details are being put in place for the show, which will be hosted by Smooth Radio and feature a popular music act, preview this year’s Derby pantomime Sleeping Beauty – and all the family entertainment you can expect from the free switch-on event with some well-known local faces.
Starting at 4pm, a parade will weave its way from The Spot and through St Peter’s Street, Cornmarket and Derby Market Place to the stage. It will be led by the Derby Season of Light community lantern parade, made up of adults and children with bright and beautiful lanterns created in workshops led by Surtal Arts.
At the head of the parade will be professional artist Stephanie Sian Coley with her show-stopping lantern sculpture, which she will create at the Museum of Making during the Season of Light. Traditional Dhol drummers will sound the parade.
Entertainment will start onstage in Corporation Street at 3.30pm, with the show ending with the grand finale of the Christmas lights switch on at 6pm.
The event will be produced by Derby LIVE, Derby City Council’s events arm, with the support of media partner Smooth Radio and CityFibre.
Read Easy Derby & District is a charitable organisation recently set up to help adults living Derby City, Erewash, Amber Valley and South Derbyshire to learn to read.
Their team of dedicated and friendly Reading Coaches work with Readers to build their confidence and their ability to read independently. Starting in the Autumn, these sessions will be 1:1 at a time and place to suit both Reader and Coach, and completely free of charge.
As Sara Martin, Leader of Read Easy Derby & District, says, “When people can read they can register with a GP, understand food labels and prescriptions, find work and help their children with their schoolwork. The impact is huge and benefits the entire community.”
Who can learn? Adults who want to learn to read or who’d like to build their confidence with reading. It’s a flexible, confidential scheme, enabling Readers to learn quietly and comfortably at their own pace with their own Reading Coach.
What books will they use? Read Easy Coaches and their Readers use the phonics-based Turning Pages manuals* as their main resource. The programme also includes lots of reading books written for adults. * Published by Shannon Trust
Where do they meet? All our reading sessions take place in public yet discreet venues. There will always be other people around but Readers won’t be overlooked.
How long will it take? Reading sessions last half an hour and take place twice a week. Some people complete the course in as little as a year, while others take more than two years. The important thing is that everyone can learn at their own pace without feeling rushed.
“Since learning to read, I have gained the confidence to read in public and ask questions. In restaurants, I can make my own choices and not have to copy someone else’s.” Alison – Reader, Read Easy Winchester.
If you’ve been inspired to take action, here’s how you can get involved:
If you or someone you know would like help with their reading then please contact Marianne at email@example.com
If you’re a local business who’d like to support the charity to train 12 Reading Coaches then please contact: Jill at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you would like to offer them a venue then please contact Pauline at email@example.com
Follow them on Social media for the latest news:
See their website for more information: readeasy.org.uk/groups/derby/
The Summer Reading Challenge is aimed at children aged from 4 to 11 years and is designed for all reading interests and abilities. Younger children can also join.
Join the Wild World Heroes for the Summer Reading Challenge and discover how you can make a difference to the environment too. Teaming up with WWF, this will be a very special nature-themed Challenge that will inspire you to stand up for the planet!
Wild World Heroes will feature amazing books, awesome rewards, and plenty of ideas for taking care of our environment. Are you excited to join the #WildWorldHeroes this summer?
Find out more on the Derby Libraries Website:
Déda reopens for Déda | Academy, the regarded programme of dance classes for children and young people from 19 April 2021.
With Covid-19 safety measures in place, Déda’s friendly, experienced team will guide young people through their dance journeys in Déda’s beautiful, fully equipped studios.
Déda’s in person and online class programmes will begin on the week commencing
Monday 19 April 2021. Prices begin from £3.50 per class. Tickets are on sale now and
can be purchased from https://www.deda.uk.com/classes.
IN PERSON classes for children:
Movers and Shakers is a fun and creative introduction to dance for 2- 5 year olds and their parent or guardians.
Street Jazz is for Children aged 4 - 11
Ballet and Contemporary Kids (4 - 7) and Juniors (7 - 11) classes
Youth Company Class offers 10 - 19 year olds the chance to explore creative dance techniques.
Illuminate brings together disabled people aged 10 -25 years to dance safely on Zoom.
For adults, Déda continues to offer an online programme of #DerbyWell drop in classes including ONLINE: Ballet to Make You Feel Better, ONLINE: Yoga with Marie and ONLINE: Rock the Hoop (hula-hoop dance class). Weekly Wellbeing Wednesday classes for adults will give participants the chance to try a different style each week.
Déda’s building including the CUBE café | bar are currently closed to the public with the exception of hires, residencies and University of Derby’s BA degree programme.
Check www.deda.uk.com/news for the latest updates.
On 27 May – 22 August 2021, Derby Museums in partnership with Wild in Art, are bringing a flock of 30 colourful and unique 5ft rams on a trail around the city of Derby.
The ram sculpture is based on the mythical Derby Ram from the 18th Century song, which according to legend was ten yards high with enormous horns and a huge flowing fleece.
Each ram has been designed and decorated by a different well-known or emerging artist, creating a multi-coloured spectacle throughout the city. The trail will appeal to young and old alike and encourages both residents and visitors to have fun exploring and be inspired and enchanted by the sculptures. The Ram Trail is perfect for a walking tour of Derby city centre.
At the end of the trail each of the rams will be auctioned off to raise funds for Derby Museums’ Endowment Campaign, helping to secure the future of Derby Museums for everyone for years to come. Every pound raised at the auction will be matched pound for pound by a grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund.