Summer storytelling festival for families

Friday 26 – Sunday 28 July 2019

Celebrate the joy of storytelling at Shakespeare’s Telling Tales, our lively family festival. Now in its fourth year, the festival brings together children’s authors, performers and storytellers to celebrate the power of the imagination.

As part of the festival, ticket holders get free entry to Bottom’s Book Market. See what’s happening in this immersive space.

Mouth Open, Story Jump Out

Sam Wanamaker Playhouse
Join master maker-upper Polarbear for a whirl-wind storytelling adventure in this glorious family show celebrating the creative potential inside all of us. Recommended for: 8+

Let us…on your imaginary forces work!

Sam Wanamaker Playhouse
Poets Joseph Coelho, Kate Wakeling and Victoria Adukwei Bulley invite you to join them for a fun-filled afternoon of performance and poetry celebrating the power of our imagination. Recommended for: 8+

How to Hide a Lion

Watkins Studios
How do you hide a lion!? It’s not easy but author (and lion hiding expert!) Helen Stephens is here to help. Join her for a very special live drawing, lion-hiding, storytelling adventure. Recommended for: 4+

The Black Flamingo

Nancy Knowles Lecture Theatre
Get ready for the arrival of The Black Flamingo! Poet, drag and spoken word artist Dean Atta takes you on a journey of self-expression, identity and self-acceptance. Recommended for Young Adults (14+ years)

Oi Kes!

Nancy Knowles Lecture Theatre
Come along to this interactive event where the fun never stops – full of storytelling fun, hilarious mishaps and, of course, lots of very silly rhymes. Recommended for: 4-7

A Midsummer Night's Dream Storytelling

Sam Wanamaker Playhouse
A storytelling of Shakespeare’s much-loved comedy, with magic, mischief and a very silly donkey. Recommended for: 5-12

Robin Hood Storytelling

Sam Wanamaker Playhouse Sam Wanamaker Playhouse
With the help of Globe expert storytellers, Southbank will feel like Sherwood Forest as you join Robin Hood and his band of Merry Men in one glorious hour of storytelling. Recommended for: 6+

The Merry Wives of Windsor Storytelling

Sam Wanamaker Playhouse
The merry wives of Windsor are about to teach Sir John Falstaff a very big lesson. Join us for this family storytelling of love, jealousy and one very big ego! Recommended for: 5 -12

The Merry Wives of Windsor Workshop Ages: 5-8

Watkins Studios
Families learn about the plot, characters and language of The Merry Wives of Windsor through active participation and play. Recommended for: 5-8

The Merry Wives of Windsor Workshop Ages: 9-12

Watkins Studios
Families learn about the plot, characters and language of The Merry Wives of Windsor through active participation and play. Recommended for: 9-12

The Jake Atlas Treasure Hunt

Nancy Knowles Lecture Theatre
Rob Lloyd Jones’ fun and interactive event includes take-home facts about Egyptian treasures, a reading from his new book, a quiz and prizes. Recommended for: 7+

Henry V Workshops Ages: 5-8

Watkins Studios
Families learn about the plot, characters and language of Henry V through active participation and play. Recommended for: 5-8

You can be anything!

Watkins Studios
Riley has no idea what he wants to be when he grows up and he needs your help to decide! Join Davina Hamilton in this playful storytelling event for the whole family. Recommended for: 4+

An Elephant in the Garden

Sam Wanamaker Playhouse
Michael Morpurgo’s best-selling novel is brought to life by Alison Reade and cellist Clare O’ Connell in the candlelit Sam Wanamaker Playhouse. Recommended for: 9+

Meet the creator of Hugless Douglas

Nancy Knowles Lecture Theatre
Douglas is a big brown loveable bear in need of a hug. Discover all you need to know about the perfect bear hug and draw your own bear in this interactive talk with David Melling. Recommended for: 4+


Watkins Studios
Get creative in this craft workshop with Ese Akpojotor as she invites you to imagine what Shakespeare’s most famous male characters like Hamlet and Macbeth might look like if they were Black SuperShero characters! Recommended for: 7+

The Garden of Lost Secrets

Nancy Knowles Lecture Theatre
Find yourself swept back in time to a stunning manor house during World War One, and join author A.M. Howell as she solves the mystery of the Garden of Lost Secrets. Recommended for: 7+

A Midsummer Afternoon’s Writing Workshop

Watkins Studios
Poet Jasmine Simms invites you to join her for a writing workshop based on A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Using found objects as clues, you will find your way out of a dream by remembering the place you were in before you fell asleep. Recommended for: 11+

What the Ladybird Heard

Nancy Knowles Lecture Theatre
Join Lydia Monks for an interactive storytelling and illustration session, bringing a whole host of glittering characters to life before your very eyes. Recommended for: 3+

Globe Theatre Family Tour

Globe Theatre
Lift the lid on Shakespeare's London in these playful family tours for ambitious explorers, young and old.