Wee and Big Inspiration Festivals

An impressive range of activities including theatre, puppetry and workshops for kids young and old

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Wee and Big Inspiration Festivals

Looking through the Big and Wee Inspiration Festival brochures, the first thing that strikes you is the range. From balletLORENT’s adventurous new dance work Underneath the Floorboards to light and video installation The Light Garden and Oliver Searle’s musical theatre adaptation of Geoff Plant's book The Farmer’s Cheese, neglected artforms are few and far between.

‘I try to give as broad a spectrum of the arts as possible,’ says festival programmer Maggie Singleton, ‘to include dance and music and visual arts – as many different aspects as I can. The programme is a combination of things I’ve discovered that I’m really keen on, things that people bring to me – and sometimes just taking a chance on an exciting new development.’

Run by Glasgow Life, many of the events in the Big (ages 5-12) and Wee (under 5s) Inspiration Festivals are aimed at school and nursery groups, but there are also plenty of fun activities for families to enjoy. Sessions at the Burrell Collection, workshops at Platform and Glasgow Print Studio, and a ‘Day of Inspiration’ based on a Commonwealth theme are all on the cards, as well as some beautiful puppet theatre such as Clydebuilt’s Diving Belle.

For Singleton, providing accessible, stimulating arts activities and performances is about more than just entertainment. ‘I’ve always felt that these kind of experiences are crucial to children’s development,’ she says. ‘It can help them express their emotions and develop their language. It’s so important that children have the opportunity to participate in magical experiences, and things that could really influence and change the way they feel about things.’

Various venues, Glasgow, Mon 24 Oct–Fri 4 Nov.

The Farmer's Cheese

Oliver Searle's adaptation of 'The Farmer's Cheese' is a musical adventure written for hearing-impaired children performed by SYMPOSIA. Suitable for children aged 3–7 and their friends and families. Part of Inspiration.

Diving Belle

Dive into the magical world of Belle's Carousel Café, where one day a storm is brewing. Ages 5+.

Underneath the Floorboards

balletLorent presents a show about a little boy who discovers a portal to a magical world in the bottom of a moving box.

The Light Garden

A performance installation created at Sadlers Wells for wee ones aged 18 months to 5 years. The adventure starts in the near darkness, continues down a path of of animated pebbles to a campsite and a magical cave, complete with beanbag hillside, crawling ladybirds and interactive fun. Part of Wee Inspiration.

Fun @ the Burrell

Museum fun designed especially for the under 5s and their parents/carers. Part of Wee Inspiration.

Day of Inspiration @ Platform

A day of activities and fun with a Commonwealth theme, ahead of Glasgow's hosting of the Commonwealth Games in 2014. There are drop-in drama classes for ages 5–7 and an art club for ages 5–11, as well as drama for ages 14–25 with the National Youth Theatre. Part of Inspiration.

Little Printers Family Fun Workshop

Bring along wrapping paper, magazine cuttings and any other scraps to include in a mini book, which kids will be shown how to make themselves. Ages 7–12 + parent/guardian. Part of Inspiration. Booking is essential.

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