The Letter J make performance and art experiences for children and their communities.
Grandad and Me is a living storybook about loss, longing and the treasures of memory and imagination. We meet a young girl who is missing her Grandad – he has gone, even though his favourite job was being her Grandad. Led by found objects and her imagination, she traces his footsteps on a magical adventure through time and space.
Created and performed by Eilidh MacAskill and Fiona Manson
Directed by Lee Lyford
The Polar Bears are moving up in the world. They’ve lost their balloon and they need to get it back. It’s time to Get up, Step up, climb up, jump up One thing’s for sure, the only way is Up!
These two lovable Polar Bears are intrepid explorers, famous for their wild expeditions. This time they’ll be climbing trees, jumping on clouds and reaching for the stars as they race all the way up to space. Of course, they’ll stop for sandwiches on the way!
A fun, surreal and highly enjoyable treat for children aged 2-5.
The Polar Bears are the creation of Eilidh MacAskill and Fiona Manson. Gentle, silent wanderers led by their sense of curiosity and their stomachs, the bears were originally created for an Imaginate Family Fringe event and since then have presented their walkabout performances and sit-down family shows across the UK.
Ailie is a puppeteer, performer, illustrator, designer and puppetry director creating emotionally rich and compelling theatrical experiences which highlight the beauty and surreal in the everyday.
Ailie has gone on to work as a performer, designer and maker for among others, National Theatre of Scotland, Grid Iron, TAG, The Citizens and Vanishing Point. Her own shows include 'I Vant to be Alone’, Rumpelstiltskin at the Fairytale Laundry', ‘Jazz Mouse’, 'The New Not New' and ‘Cloud Man’ which was Ailie’s first collaboration with Playwright and Director Lewis Hetherington.
Ailie and Lewis met one snowy winter in the North of Scotland, some years ago… They soon bonded over a love of creating theatre that uses objects, puppets and pictures to tell beautiful original stories which engage with the world we live in, and are full of heart, fun and magic.
They make work which is an invitation into fantastic and colourful story worlds which celebrate the extraordinary nature of the ordinary. Combining minimal, poetic text, a sumptuous handcrafted aesthetic and engaging characters they make work which lasts long in the imagination and memories of those who see it.
Ailie is an associate artist of Puppet State Theatre Company, with which she collaborated on ‘The Man Who Planted Trees’, and has toured worldwide since 2006.
Ailie has also worked for National Theatre of Scotland; Imaginate; and was co-deviser, performer, puppet and props maker for National Theatre London’s ‘Cupboard of Surprises’ Inside Out Festival 2012 which was part of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad.
Utter is a new work company, led by Co-Artistic Directors Gareth Nicholls and Joe Douglas, dedicated to developing and touring exhilarating story-led work that make our audiences feel, think and experience the world in a new light.
The company places collaboration and talent development at its heart, working with a diverse array of exceptional artists, to tell urgent theatrical stories that say something about the world around us in fresh adventurous ways.
Our first show Educating Ronnie (A Macrobert/Utter production)won a Fringe First in 2012 before touring extensively across the UK, while our second show Bloody Trams (Traverse Theatre Company in association with Utter) has had two sell-out runs at the Traverse theatre gaining exceptional four-star reviews across the board.
Our recent production of Stand By premiered at the Edinburgh Fringe as part of the Made in Scotland showcase 2017. It received a Scotsman Fringe First award and enjoyed a successful sell out tour across Scotland in autumn 2017.
Produced by Utter, in association with The Byre Theatre, St Andrews Written by Adam McNamara Directed by Joe Douglas Written by a former Police Officer, Stand By shows the modern-day Police Service laid bare. www.uttertheatre.co.uk