The tin soldier marches into Festival Studio space

Joseph Brown and Robert Softley Gale in The Tin Soldier
Joseph Brown and Robert Softley Gale in The Tin Soldier
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BIRDS of Paradise theatre company end their year at the Festival Theatre Studio this week, where they present a retelling of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Tin Soldier.

“Once upon a time and far, far away there were 25 tin soldiers.

Brothers. Because they were all born from one single spoon. One spoon! That must have been one flipping big spoon.”

An accessible and enchanting new take on Andersen’s first ever children’s story, the show has been created for five to nine year olds.

A magical winter’s tale, the piece centres on two people who find each other in a rough tough world although, like winter, nothing lasts forever.

Written by Mike Kenny and directed by Birds of Paradise’s Artistic Director Garry Robson, The Tin Soldier stars Robert Softley Gale and Caroline Parker.

In a true collaboration, intricate design is paired with beautiful music as award-winning Russian puppet designer Victor Nikonenko teams up with Lauren Gilmour, who will perform original music alongside Audrey Tait.

Influenced by a visit to St Petersburg, Robson says, “I spent time with young people in an Internat; an orphanage that becomes a home for life. 
“For these young people there was no way of moving on from there so to compensate for this, the children formed family groupings amongst themselves, essentially look after one another.

“As part of this they cultivate a rich imaginative life, dreaming up stories and tales for one another to add colour and hope to their existence.

“On return I spoke to writer Mike Kenny about these experiences, and the idea of the play was developed.’

The Tin Soldier, The Studio, Potterrow, until Saturday, £15, 0131-529 6000