Past event

The Old Vic’s Bicentenary Celebrations

Saturday 12th May 2018

Over the last two years The Children’s Bookshow has been privileged to work with The Old Vic theatre in London. We are delighted to have been asked to programme an afternoon of children’s literature events on Saturday 12th May to help celebrate their 200th birthday. The programme will be part of a wider open house celebration - look out for further details on how to book tickets at

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Alexis Deacon

Hugely talented children’s illustrator and author, Alexis Deacon, will be telling two of his favourite stories and doing some live drawing - though he’ll need the help of the audience! Join us for a entertaining, interactive half hour.

2- 2.30pm

Suitable for 5-7 year olds


Alexis Deacon is a writer and illustrator of children's books. His first book, Slow Loris, was published in 2002 and was shortlisted for the Blue Peter Book Award. In 2015 it was named one of the hundred best children's books of all time by Time Magazine. He has twice been shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal (for Beegu, and Jim’s Lion) and is a two time recipient of The New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Books Award. In 2008 he was chosen by Booktrust as one of the ten best new illustrators of the preceding decade.

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Rachel Rooney

Join award-winning children's poet Rachel Rooney for 30 minutes of lively, interactive poetry performance. Rachel's poems are inventive and accessible, often funny, always beautifully-crafted.


Suitable for 7+


RacheI Rooney’s poetry collection The Language of Cat won the CLPE Poetry Award and was long-listed for the Carnegie Medal. Her second collection My Life as a Goldfish was shortlisted for the CLiPPA 2015. Her forthcoming book A Kid in My Class will be published by Otter - Barry Books in 2018. She spends her time visiting schools and running workshops as well as performing her work at festivals and for The Children's Bookshow. She was Chair of Judges for the CLiPPA 2017 and the Betjeman Poetry Prize.

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Benji Davies

Bring your little ones to see award-winning children’s author and illustrator, Benji Davies, reading some of his well-loved stories. Benji will also demonstrate his charming illustrative style and will be drawing live.


Suitable for 3+


Benji Davies is an illustrator, author and animation director. His first self-penned picture book The Storm Whale won the inaugural Oscar’s Book Prize and was Dutch Picture Book Of The Year 2017. His second, Grandad’s Island, won the children’s book category of the AOI World Illustration Awards 2015 and was crowned Best Picture Book and overall Children’s Book of the Year at the Sainsbury’s Children’s Book Awards 2015. His books have been translated into over thirty languages around the world.

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Jan Blake

Join Storyteller Jan Blake as she shares stories of love and family from Africa. This unique and unforgettable event will captivate you from start to finish.


Suitable for 9+


Jan Blake has been performing worldwide for over twenty-five years. Specialising in stories from Africa, the Caribbean, and Arabia, she has a well-earned reputation for dynamic and generous storytelling. As well as performing at all the major storytelling festivals both nationally and internationally, she works regularly with the British Council, leads storytelling workshops for emerging storytellers, and gives masterclasses for teachers, brands, and businesses. She also regularly captivates school children with mesmerising stories.

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