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The Toad Knew

James Thierrée / Compagnie du Hanneton

This is visual theatre to enchant you, delight you, and fill you with wonder. 

This is the magical world of acrobat, poet, clown, magician, James Thierrée. Phantasmagorical creations on stage, and intoxicating images somewhere between Salvador Dalí and Tim Burton. Expect the unexpected and you’ll not be disappointed.

The Toad Knew is Thierrée’s newest creation with his Compagnie du Hanneton. It brings together dancers, contortionists, high-wire artists and his own extraordinary physical prowess.

Swiss-born Thierrée has teased audiences throughout the world for nearly two decades with his flamboyant theatrical creations, sometimes dazzling, sometimes funny, sometimes grotesque. He comes from an esteemed theatrical background, making his stage debut at the age of four playing a walking suitcase. His 2009 Raoul used mirrors, talking teapots and umbrella jellyfi sh to explore the erosion of individual identity, and in his 2013 Tabac Rouge he presented a Bosch-like, hallucinatory vision of a teetering totalitarian monarch. He blends visual comedy and a fantastical imagination in captivating shows that defy categorisation.

Intertwining dreams and childish terrors, burlesque and realism, The Toad Knew explores the raw, unforgiving love between brothers and sisters.

[James Thierrée is] a theatrical magician who has always skipped nimbly along the tightrope between circus, dance and theatre

The Guardian

Expect it to be flamboyant, hallucinatory and ravishingly beautiful

The Guardian

James Thierrée Creator and performer

Performers Valérie Doucet, Samuel Dutertre, Mariama, Yann Nédélec, Thi Mai Nguyen

A co-production with the Théâtre de Carouge-Atelier de Genève, Célestins-Théâtre de Lyon, Radiant-Bellevue, Sadler’s Wells London in association with Crying Out Loud, Théâtre Royal de Namur, Théâtre du Rond-Point Paris, Théâtre de la Ville Paris, La Coursive Scène Nationale de La Rochelle, La Comédie de Clermont-Ferrand, Théâtre Sénart Lieusaint, L’arc scène nationale Le Creusot, Opéra de Massy, Odyssud Blagnac, Théâtre de Villefranche, Espace Jean Legendre-Théâtre de Compiègne and Edinburgh International Festival.

More information on some of the artists

Compagnie du Hanneton

24-28 August 2016

This event was part of a previous International Festival and is therefore unavailable to book. The 2019 programme will be available from Wednesday 27 March at 10am.