“Master of Children’s Theatre” David Wood joins forces with two Newcastle cultural venues

Thursday 19 May, 6-7pm

Seven Stories – The National Centre for Children’s Books and Newcastle’s Theatre Royal and City Hall will align their public programme to welcome nationally acclaimed dramatist, David Wood, ahead of his award-winning Goodnight Mister Tom stage production.

David Wood OBE - distinguished producer, director, actor, author and playwright will be in conversation with Seven Stories’ Collection Director Sarah Lawrance at Newcastle’s Theatre Royal.

The event, which will combine the expertise and passion of two treasured cultural venues, will be held in the Olivier Suite at the Theatre Royal on Thursday 19 May.  It is the ideal opportunity for enthusiasts of all ages to discover the creative process involved in transforming a modern classic into sell-out theatre for children.

Ahead of his poignant theatre adaptation of Goodnight Mister Tom (adapted from the modern classic by Michelle Magorian), David Wood will discuss his creative approach, reveal more about the production of his plays and outline what he feels makes a successful children’s adaptation.  The award-winning dramatist will also share highlights from his illustrious career.

David Wood donated his archive to Seven Stories in 2008 with further donations to follow and his collection forms the National Centre’s largest archive.  Original material from the David Wood archive will be showcased at the event to explore David’s creative process in this fascinating insight into adaptation and theatre production. 

David has adapted some of the nation’s most-loved children’s classics for theatre including The Tiger Who Came to Tea (Judith Kerr), The BFG (Roald Dahl) and Babe, The Sheep-Pig (Dick King-Smith) and has dedicated his entire career to bringing fully staged, high quality live theatre productions to children, whom he feels deserve the best theatre available.

Tickets for Goodnight Mister Tom: Seven Stories in conversation with David Wood on Thursday 19 May, 6-7pm are available for £5 per person from the Seven Stories website.   To buy tickets to see the Olivier award-winning Chichester Festival Theatre production of Goodnight Mister Tom, visit the Theatre Royal website.


Media contact. For images and interview opportunities please contact:

Seven Stories – The National Centre for Children’s Books

Hannah Lambert, Marketing and Digital Coordinator

E: hannah.lambert@sevenstories.org.uk

T: 0300 3301095 ext 223

Theatre Royal and City Hall, Newcastle

Miranda Robertson, Media & Communications Officer

E: Miranda.Robertson@theatreroyal.co.uk

T: 0191 244 2518

Notes to editor:

Seven Stories – The National Centre for Children’s Books

Seven Stories is the only place in Britain dedicated to the art of children’s books and the joy of reading, and one of just a few such places in the world. Our work is enjoyed by over 150,000 people every year.

Everything we do aims to inspire children and grown-ups to be curious, imaginative and creative. We strive to ensure that people of all ages, backgrounds and abilities can take part to enjoy a lifetime of reading for pleasure.

Our home is a carefully converted Victorian warehouse in Newcastle upon Tyne in the North East of England. We opened in 2005 and our seven floors house galleries for exhibitions, performances and creative spaces, a specialist children’s bookshop and a café.

Seven Stories is widely recognised for our abilities and achievements. We have established an important collection of artwork, manuscripts and archives of Britain’s most acclaimed writers and illustrators for children from 1930s to the present day. We bring this unique treasure trove to life through playful and immersive exhibitions, an entertaining and informative public events programme and research opportunities.

Theatre Royal and City Hall Newcastle

The Theatre Royal is one of only nine Grade 1 Listed theatres in England and is regarded by many as the UK’s finest theatre building. On Friday 1 April 2016 Newcastle Theatre Royal and Newcastle City Hall merged becoming one organisation under the management of Newcastle Theatre Royal Trust, an independent charity.

Both venues will continue to put on a wide and wonderful array of top shows in two of Newcastle’s most historic and much-loved buildings.

David Wood

Known as "the national children's dramatist", David Wood has a distinguished career as a producer, director, actor, author, and playwright. Wood earned a BA at Worcester College, Oxford, in 1966, where he published his first play.

David Wood has been the recipient of many awards, including the Nottinghamshire Children's Book of the Year Award for Sidney the Monster in 1990 and the Equity award for Best Show for Children and Young People for Tom's Midnight Garden in 2001. He was awarded an OBE for services to literature and drama in 2004.

As well as his children's books, plays, teleplays and screen plays, David Wood has published a number of non-fictional works, including an important handbook on children's theatre entitled Theatre for Children: A Guide to Writing, Adapting, Directing and Acting, co-written with Janet Grant.

Find out more about David Wood, his full list of plays and much more here.

Goodnight Mister Tom

Goodnight Mister Tom by Michelle Magorian (first published 1981) is about young Willie Beech who is evacuated to the country as Britain stands on the brink of the Second World War. A sad, deprived child, he slowly begins to flourish under the care of old Tom Oakley - but his new-found happiness is shattered by a summons from his mother back in London. Goodnight Mister Tom is a modern classic which won the Guardian Children's Fiction Award and was turned into the much-loved TV film starring John Thaw in 1998.

David Wood’s production of Goodnight Mister Tom was first launched in 2011.  Find out more about his adaptation here

The Olivier award-winning Chichester Festival Theatre production of Goodnight Mister Tom is at Theatre Royal, Newcastle from Tuesday 17 - Saturday 21 May 2016.