A First Opera for 0-2 Year Olds Is Touring the UK


The Royal Festival Hall at London’s Southbank centre welcomes HurlyBurly Theatre’s You are the Sun, a folk inspired opera for babies and grownups that explores the magic of nature from 29th May – 2nd June 2024.

HurlyBurly Theatre make playful theatrical experiences for babies and adults with classical singing at their heart where babies are free to be themselves and grown-ups have a chance to relax, bond and play. You are the Sun combines the joy of gentle classical singing and sensory play and is an invitation to see beauty in the smallest things and to let plants be your guide. The interactive and playful set casts a magical spell with locally foraged plants, water, light and soil. parents are led by their babies to reconnect with the natural world.

“You Are The Sun by HurlyBurly is a masterclass in how early years theatre should be created.”
Zoe Pickering, Z-Arts Head of Programming

“I really can’t praise this show enough. Hurly Burly have a knack of creating unique and enchanting musical theatre for babies and young children (see their previous show ‘Meet me a Tree), but this is a knockout. The performances are highly accomplished yet playful, the set design is spot on (pun intended), and the music is suitably celestial (imagine children’s songs, but from the Wickerman, composed by Vaughan Williams). Someone needs to release this on record!” .
Audience response at Brixton House Theatre Dec 23

​​Artistic Directors Sarah Forbes and Catherine Carter founded HurlyBurly in 2016 having become new parents themselves. The duo who originally trained as classical singers began to work together to create shows they wanted to experience at that time which are as much for new parents as they are for babies. Everyone is free to move around and interact with the performers and space in whatever way they choose. Parents are given a rare opportunity to sit back and relax enveloped in beautiful, soothing and mesmeric music. HurlyBurly shows have since toured across the UK including at Royal Opera House Covent Garden. Polka Theatre, The Egg Theatre Royal Bath and Hullabaloo Darlington – National Centre for Creativity in Early Childhood.

Catherine Carter and Sarah Forbes, co-founders of HurlyBurly said: “We believe in creating high quality experiences for very young children and their parents to introduce them to the magic of theatre in a safe stress-free space for them to explore at their own pace. Over and again audiences comment on how mesmerised their children were by the music, the singing and the sensory play. For us as artists the experience never gets boring because every show is different depending on who is in the room with us. The babies become the performance – it is a great privilege to share this moment of vulnerability and adventure with new parents and their tiny children.’

You are the Sun is created by Catherine Carter and Sarah Forbes with words and music by Catherine Carter and design by Kirsty Harris. The show’s development has been supported by The Egg (Theatre Royal Bath), Portsmouth Guildhall and Watermans Arts Centre as well as Arts Council England.

Currently touring, the show will also visit Farnham Maltings, Half Moon (London), Portsmouth Guildhall, Sefton library, Bolton library, Houghton Regis library, Manchester library (part of Baby Week), Wimbledon New Theatre, Cast (Doncaster), MAC (Birmingham), Chats Palace, The Gulbenkian and Aberystwyth Arts Centre, whilst also working with the Lancashire Refugee Integration Team to provide free access to the show for newly arrived refugees and asylum seekers.

It has previously toured to Z-Arts Manchester, The Egg Theatre Royal Bath, Polka Theatre, Hullabaloo, Chichester Theatre, Hat Factory Luton, The Montgomery Sheffield, Wonderarts St Helens and libraries across the UK.

Celebrate the gift of nature in this relaxed and playful opera for babies and grown-ups. Help to conjure a world out of breath, water, sunlight and soil in a magical musical adventure for 0 – 2-year-olds. Tickets are on sale now at www.southbankcentre.co.uk

You can find out more about HurlyBurly and the tour of You are the Sun at www.hurlyburlytheatre.com or on Facebook: @HurlyBurlyCo // Instagram and X @hurlyburly_co

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