Children's Festival Launches

The Edinburgh International Children's Festival returns to the city during May in a programme celebrating the best of children’s theatre and dance, showcasing high quality, distinctive Scottish and international performances for an audience of children, their teachers, and their families. The 2022 programme offers a fabulous mix for young audiences including theatre and dance, but also circus for babies, acrobatic painting, musical explorations and productions that incorporate beautiful video projections and soundtracks.

New experiences for under 5yrs

There is a lot of choice for babies and under 5s this year with shows such as Little Top a magical and colourful first circus experience for babies and their grown-ups, or light! a joyful celebration of shadow and light featuring a mysterious spotlight and a magical radiating fabric.

Children's - Little Top

Physical theatre and dance

Many of this year's programme are highly physical. Little Murmur explores the trials and tribulations of living with dyslexia, combining visual design with dance and humour, while Birdboy, set to a toe-tapping soundtrack, takes us inside the whirring mind of a young boy dealing with peer pressure.

Childrens - Little Murmur

Two new pieces for teenagers

Imaginate - the producers of the Edinburgh International Children’s Festival - has commissioned two new exciting theatre shows which will appear at the Festival in May 2022 and go on tour across Scotland. Both productions speak of the complex experiences children are dealing with and explore the theme of mental health and how to make sense of a confusing world. The Hope River Girls - inspired by real events - tells the story of a group of schoolgirls who start behaving strangely and come under intense media scrutiny. Whille I am Tiger is about a girl who is given a pet tiger by her parents following the suicide of her big brother, whose death is never discussed again.

Childrens - Commissions

Family Encounters Day

On Saturday 7th May, the Festival hosts its eagerly awaiting Family Encounters Day, a day of fee pop-up performances and artist interventions for families in the beautiful setting of the National Musuem of Scotland. Drop-in activies include walk about performances, musical explorations and hands on arts activities. This year, the programme also features a New Stories strand supported by the Year of Stories 2022 Community Stories Fund and new commissions, in partnership with Merchant City Festival, National Museum of Scotland and Platform.

Childrens - Family Day

Get a taste of what's in store in our short trailer: 

Launching the Festival programme, Director Noel Jordan said:

This year’s festival is full of special moments for children and their families – experiences that will enable young people to reconnect and encourage them to wish, desire and aspire beyond their own lives and immediate neighbourhoods, into their potential future selves. Communal connectedness is crucial in the lives of children and young people and never more timely than this current period in our history.”

And the Scottish Government's Culture Minister Neil Gray MSP said:

We’re delighted to support the Edinburgh International Children’s Festival’s line-up this year with £115,000 from the Festivals Expo Fund. The festival has a well-deserved reputation for showcasing the very best in children’s theatre and dance productions from around the world. It’s important that children of all ages have the opportunity to experience these national and international multi-artform productions, which can ignite their imaginations and creativity and contribute to their well-being.”

The Edinburgh International Children's Festival runs from 7-15 May 2022. Browse all the shows and download the programme HERE.

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