Punchdrunk Enrichments A Small Tale Photo by Stephen Dobbie 1

Baboró partners with Punchdrunk Enrichment to bring innovative artistic project to Irish primary schools

Punchdrunk Enrichments A Small Tale Photo by Stephen Dobbie 1

Baboró International Arts Festival for Children, Galway, and Punchdrunk Enrichment, a charity creating transformational theatre for education, community and family audiences, are establishing a new three year artistic partnership. As a first step in this partnership, Baboró will deliver Punchdrunk Enrichment’s A Small Tale: A Teacher-Led Adventure to 15 Irish primary schools in 2021. A Small Tale is an innovative teacher-led storytelling experience for primary school children that aims to ignite and inspire a passion for writing whilst raising standards in reading, speaking and listening.

"We are thrilled to be working with Barboró to bring A Small Tale to Irish primary schools. This project has a track record of making a big impact: getting pupils excited about writing and engaging teachers in new creative ways to deliver learning. The project is the start of a multi-year partnership and we cannot wait to begin this journey."
- Peter Higgin, Artistic Director, Punchdrunk Enrichment

The teacher and their class read a mysterious old picture book about two mischievous and messy tiny people with a love of stories. But when they return to the book the following day the pages are all blank, except for two sets of tiny footprints. They discover that the characters have escaped. Will the pupils be able to get them back to safety, before it’s too late?

"We at Baboró are thrilled to invite Punchdrunk Enrichment to work with us, and in turn, Irish artists, teachers and school children in the delivery of this magical experience which invites children, and the whole school community to suspend disbelief as they host two tiny adventurous characters in their school. Punchdrunk Enrichment has wowed audiences across the world with their unique brand of storytelling, and we’re very excited to begin this new partnership by bringing A Small Tale to Ireland for the first time."- Aislinn O’hEocha, Executive Artistic Director, Baboró.

A Small Tale, created by Punchdrunk Enrichment Associate Director Tara Boland, is being introduced to Irish schools as part of a three year partnership with Baboró. The partnership will include teacher training for at least 15 teachers per annum, plus training for two localartists who will be immersed in Punchdrunk Enrichment’s practice and work with teachers and schools in the delivery of the programme. Two Galway theatre makers, Eileen Gibbons and Sorcha Ní Chrónín, will be working with Baboró on this special project.

Schools participating in A Small Tale will receive a full day’s training and a toolkit with handmade props to deliver this storytelling experience in Autumn 2021. The project takes place across seven days andcan be used by the trained teacher year after year with the same set ofassets and resources.

Schools are being asked to register their interest by 30th June in advance of the first cohort of training during Baboró’s annual festival in October 2021.

To ensure equality of access to the arts for schools and children, the cost of participating in the programme will be subsidised by Baboró with funding from the Arts Council and the generous support of Medtronic - exclusive sponsor of Baboró’s Creative Connections programme and 25th anniversary.

Punchdrunk Enrichment is a charity that creates transformational theatre for education, community and family audiences. Their work makes a powerful impact and takes you on an unforgettable journey.

Originally founded in 2000 by Felix Barrett, Punchdrunk are celebrated as pioneers of a new form of theatre in which roaming audiences experience epic storytelling inside sensory theatrical worlds. The company created award-winning shows including Sleep No More, Masque of the Red Death and Faust.

In 2008 a founding company member, Peter Higgin established Punchdrunk Enrichment to take the company’s innovative practice into communities and schools, creating performances and workshops with and for children, young people, families and communities. Today Punchdrunk Enrichment is an independent charity dedicated to creating experiences for as wide an audience as possible.

Learn more about Punchdrunk Enrichment here.

Eileen Gibbons is a Galway-based theatre practitioner. She started working in the theatre as an actor but more recently has worked as a dramaturg and playwright. She has also worked as a director and arts facilitator. She has played various roles for stage and TV and has worked as a voice over artist in cartoons.

In 2013 she was awarded the ‘Above and Beyond Award 2013’ by Baboró for her short film, ‘Foxes & Donkeys’. She has worked as a dramaturg with Branar Téatar do Pháistí and with Blue Teapot Theatre company. In 2020 she became an associate artist with Axis Ballymun.

Sorcha Ní Chróinín is a born-and-bred Galwegian. For the last six years she has worked as Stage Manager for Moonfish Theatre and Branar Téatar do Pháistí on many exciting shows and tours. Previously she lived in Edinburgh for 6 years studying fine art (with a little bit of animation thrown in) and loves any opportunity to use her creativity. She has recently received an Agility Award to research how animation and recordings of live-theatre can be merged to create fresh digital experiences for audiences.

Since she saw her first Punchdrunk show ‘The Drowned Man’ in 2014 she has been fascinated with immersive theatre and is beyond thrilled to be working on this partnership project between Baboró and Punchdrunk.