Bringing stories to life

Small World Theatre works creatively to bring human stories to life and address issues through performance and the power of puppetry. Founding directors Ann Shrosbree and Bill Hamblett worked with Arts and Development across the world in Africa, Asia and the Middle East for clients such as SOS Sahel, British Council Zambia, Save the Children, OXFAM and CAFOD.

They worked within communities who were living in impossibly difficult circumstances and brought their issues to light. In 2019, Small World Theatre created an exhibition to document some of the work they did to support basic Human Rights, the Rights of the Child, women’s and men’s health programmes and highlight environmental issues. A reminder of that exhibition ‘Hands Up: defining 40 years of puppetry‘ is available here and recounts the contribution they made in.

Small World Theatre continues to work with refugee communities where possible and most recently partnered Winding Snake Productions to make NODDFA.

NODDFA: refugees’ stories captured on film

Small World Theatre partnered Winding Snake Productions, a media education company, to deliver a project with some of the most disadvantaged people using participatory drama methods as a means to tell their traumatic stories. Small World Theatre encouraged refugees to share their stories, draw and create shadow puppets and perform in a trusted environment. We were welcomed by Oasis Cardiff, a centre for asylum seekers and refugees from Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Sudan, Mali, Congo, Eritrea, Vietnam and many other countries.

The aim of the project was to offest negative stereotyping of immigrants and refugees in the media. NODDFA has become a short animated film which was screened by WOW Film Festival (where audiences applauded) DocYourWorld 2017 in Chicago. It has now been entered into other short film festivals.