Matthew Kaner
COMPOSER

Hansel & Gretel at Cheltenham Festival

Presented by Goldfield Productions, and touring throughout 2018, Hansel and Gretel is a re-imagining of the famous tale, created by a stellar artistic team. Enter a world of darkness and deception, a helter-skelter journey into ghostly landscapes and feasts of sugar…

The words of Simon Armitage retell the famous story in an extended lyrical poem entwined with chamber music by composer Matthew Kaner, one of the most original voices of his generation. With shadowplay and puppetry by renowned artist Clive Hicks-Jenkins, Hansel & Gretel presents an evocative collection of art-forms, drawing audiences into a uneasy yet curiously familiar landscape.

Through narration, song and chamber music, audiences can expect foreboding musical landscapes where string sonorities tug at the earth and glittering sugar-highs and poignant lyricism express the heartbreak of abandonment. Kaner’s ensemble features an unusual dark-hued collective of viola, cello, cor anglais, clarinet and horn, supplemented by the eerie childhood sounds of toy pianos led by the remarkable story-teller and soprano Adey Grummet.

Suitable for ages 12+. For booking details and touring dates, visit the diary here.

Nearly two years in the planning, Hansel & Gretel was inspired by the visual creations of artist Clive Hicks-Jenkins. His compelling Hansel & Gretel characters had appeared as prints, in picture books and as Toy Theatre for Pollcoks Toy Shop. It seemed a natural development to bring these ideas to the stage and we were struck by the potential of using a well-known and much loved story framework to tell a darker, glittering Hansel & Gretel fairystory for the 21st century.

This new staged production of Hansel & Gretel is a combination of the work of three exceptional and individual artists – poet Simon Armitage, visual artist Clive Hicks-Jenkins and composer Matthew Kaner  – whose imaginations and skills delve deeply into the twisted themes of the original tale, creating a unique, contemporary fairytale landscape where nothing is quite as it seems….

Hansel & Gretel outreach focusses on the themes of home and homelessness and the power of storytelling. Activities include story-making workshops, a pop up fairy-tale touring production for our youngest audiences, large scale bespoke community events and site-specific storytelling theatre productions for young people. All events and details will be listed on the Goldfield Productions website.