Award-winning production company Spun Glass Theatre are opening a children’s theatre for young children, babies and their families: Mini Playhouse.
Located in Hastings, Mini Playhouse provides a purpose-made, warm and welcoming family hub for babies and young children to be immersed in the magic of live performance, offering support for parents and guardians.
Mini Playhouse is launching with a Christmas show this December, The Christmas Spirits.
Located on the seafront in Hastings, Mini Playhouse will provide a space for play, creative workshops, and live performances, introducing young children, toddlers and babies to the joys of live music and theatre from a young age. The theatre includes an intimate performance space ideal for young families, a workshop space with soft cork flooring, baby changing facilities and a sea view from the front window.
Artistic Director Jessica Cheetham was inspired to create a safe and inclusive environment for parents and children of all ages, so that going to the theatre can be fun, loud, active and accessible by her own experiences as a mother, speaking with local families about building their confidence going to events with young infants, and seeing the overwhelming positive responses to Spun Glass Theatre’s popular family-friendly workshops and performances.
From 18th – 22nd December, Mini Playhouse will launch with The Christmas Spirits, a delightful festive performance infused with original music, storytelling and visual treats. Babies, children and their grown-ups can enjoy Christmas tales told by the three Christmas spirits for free (adult tickets are pay-what-you-can).
Mini Playhouse follows Spun Glass Theatre’s successful pop-up venue Play Place in St Leonards earlier this year. The team, under Cheetham and Creative Director Ross Drury, have been working hard behind the scenes to design and deliver a welcoming and inspiring space, designed specifically with young children – and their parents – in mind. Baby-changing, crying, playing, breastfeeding and tantrums are all expected and welcomed, as Mini Playhouse aims to be a comfortable environment for all ages when they visit the theatre, café, workshops and more at this exciting new space in Hastings.
Mini Playhouse will feature a weekly programme with all members of the family in mind. There will be morning workshops, Monday – Friday, including music, Spun Glass Theatre’s popular First and Second workshops, arts and crafts and more, all led by local artists. From 12pm, Mini Playhouse will be a free-to-access Play Café, with drinks and snacks on offer, as well as play opportunities including Lego and messy play. Evenings will cater to adults, with yoga classes, pregnancy and parent support, antenatal classes and space to hire for rehearsals. During the weekends and holidays there will be a wide variety of theatre and other live performances, as well as holiday clubs and more.
The theatre is widely supported in the local community, with East Sussex County Council matching donations to the Crowdfunding campaign, which is raising money for building and decorating costs. Mini Playhouse has been generously supported by local artists and companies. The theatre was created with local building firm SDS Builders. The design team is Emma Chapman and Hastings-based Graphite Design. Local artists Maple Forge and Neonita are contributing to the creative elements, making a sensory wall, theatre seating, and an outdoor mural.
Artistic Director Ross Drury comments, We will open doors into the magical Christmas universe, telling festive tales in a plume of colour as The Christmas Spirits gather to save Christmas 2022.
This is a delightful piece of theatre that puts children at the heart of storytelling as co-creators of a theatrical, imaginative world – never seen before by planet Earth and grownups.