Preview: Bedtime Stories – 'The whole experience aims to reconnect children with their often too busy parents'

Spend a cosy hour under the big top with Upswing, and Bedtime Stories for all ages

Interview: Upswing – 'We've had lovely responses everywhere we've played'

Walk in, hand over your ticket, take a seat. That's the usual format at your average Fringe show – but Bedtime Stories is far from average, as audience members discover the second they arrive.

Because the show's title isn't a misnomer – London-based company Upswing really is going to tell you a bedtime story. And for that, you need to be tucked up in bed.

'The show is really immersive and the audience environment is an important part of it,' explains Upswing's artistic director, Vicki Amedume. Which means duvets, pillows and general cosiness.

Mixing circus, theatre, music, dance and projections, Bedtime Stories explores one family's struggle to find quality time together. The cosy set-up is a deliberate attempt by Upswing to give the families watching it just that: precious time together.

'The whole experience aims to reconnect children with their often too busy parents,' says Amedume, 'and adults with their own childhood.'

As well as garnering a host of good reviews, the show also scooped Best Family Event in the 2015 Get Creative Family Arts Festival. But what about the families themselves – what has their response been?

'It's been brilliant so far,' says Amedume. 'We developed the show in stages, presenting the work to families at each stage and asking for feedback. Then we really listened to them to see if we were reaching them in the way we wanted to.

'We have had lovely, and at times quite emotional responses everywhere we've played, so we think that our way of working really helped us create a relevant, exciting and fun experience for all the family.'

Underbelly's Circus Hub on the Meadows, 6–22 Aug (not 15), 2.30pm, £10.50–£11.50 (£9.50–£10.50). Previews 4 & 5 Aug, £8.50.

Bedtime Stories

  • 3 stars

Upswing Immerse yourself in a magical journey. Celebrate that magical time of the day when stresses and strains of life melt away and enter a world of imagination and dreams with Bedtime Stories. Tucked up with your family in a bedroom installation, take this chance to unwind and be dazzled with circus, theatre, dance…


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