Hans Christian Anderson

GSC Honorary Patron Brian Blessed OBE


 16 October – 06 November

St Nicolas’ Church, Bury Street, Guildford, Surrey  

This Autumn the award-winning Guildford Shakespeare Company invite you to join them on a musical journey of discovery full of light and laughter, and some of the best-loved tales of all time.  A young girl, her worldly belongings in a small rucksack, takes refuge in a draughty church... in her hands she cradles her only friend. Into this  solitary world comes a warm-hearted gentleman. Together, and with the Jonathan Oldfield Sara Hazemi help of a box of matches, they ignite their imaginations and take us on a musical journey of discovery full of light and laughter.

For almost 200 years, the tales of Hans Christian Andersen have become some of the most-treasured stories we have all grown up with: The Snow Queen, The Little Mermaid, The Tinderbox, The Steadfast Tin Soldier... the list is endless, and their delight continues.

This autumn GSC are bringing seven of them to life in a brand-new stage adaptation with original music and lyrics, staged in the Victorian St Nicolas' Church, in central Guildford.

Inspired by the story of The Little Match-Girl and set in the present day, GSC Associate Playwright ANT STONES (Grimms’Fairy Tales, Alice in Wonderland), weaves together four other favourite tales (The Ugly Duckling, The Emperor's New Clothes, The Princess and the Pea, Thumbelina) with two rarer stories of The Darning Needle and The Puppet Showman. 

Long-time GSC collaborators Director CHARLOTTE CONQUEST (RNT, RSC) and Designer NEIL IRISH (Opera Holland Park, Derby Theatres), have given each tale a distinctive flavour of their own, from Gilbert & Sullivan operetta to medieval romance. Complementing them is a completely original score and lyrics commissioned from TOM JACK MERIVALE (Salisbury Playhouse, Creation).

Cast includes ANNABELLE TERRY (GSC Macbeth; Creation The Tempest Live Online, Romeo & Juliet), JAMES CAMP (GSC Alice in Wonderland; Lord Chamberlain’s Men), and recent graduates JONATHAN OLDFIELD and SARA HAZEMI

Postponed from last Autumn, Tales from Hans Christian Andersen follows in the 5-star footsteps of GSC’s other classic retellings of family favourites Alice in Wonderland, The Wind in the Willows and Grimms’ Fairy Tales "Today is my 70th Birthday and you’ve made me feel 7 again!" Audience Member, 2016

Join us for an enchanting experience as we bring these classic fantasy stories colourfully to life for all ages.