THE ASSEMBLY OF ANIMALS comes to the Tolmen Centre for two performances. Part installation, part sculpture, and part puppetry performance, this is an exciting addition to our spring programme as part of the  “Festival of Curious Puppetry”. The show, which is suitable for all ages from 3 upwards, lasts about  half an hour, followed by an opportunity for  audience members to  explore the objects used and see how they function.

The Assembly of Animals has been performed widely across the UK and Europe to audiences of all ages and has been part of the British Council Showcase, which takes standout shows from the Edinburgh Fringe to wider audiences.

Tim Spooner is a visual artist and performance maker.   Exemplifying the low-tech, handmade yet magical quality of Spooner’s work, The Assembly of Animals is a series of demonstrated experiments, where the performers assemble, reorganise and animate an array of ingeniously constructed ‘animals’ of very different sizes and forms. Magnets, motors, inflating objects, travelling glowing liquid and other mechanisms give this complex installation a movement and life of its own.

Think of it as a series of ‘performed sculptures’ which fuse scientific experimentation together with puppetry. Creating vibrating compositions of living and inanimate matter through a combination of sound, electricity and often mundane everyday materials.

Tim Spooner’s idiosyncratic and unique performances attempt to expand our understanding of the physical world by revealing the inner life of objects.  Spooner’s work – usually non-verbal but full of vibrant sound – appeals to all ages.

After the performance, the audience is invited to explore the objects more closely and to discover the ways they function.

“Tim is an artistic inventor and creates this carefully constructed world, the delicacy of which requires consistent marvelling and leaves children entertained throughout”   (Theatre Bristol Writers)

“Absolutely fascinating, undeniably bonkers” (Children’s Theatre Reviews)

NOTE: This show is quite abstract in form, and is a long way from being a conventional puppet show. Expect to be surprised…. and inspired!

Performances at 2pm and 5pm

Tickets £5


By Pipeline Theatre

Following their introductory tour early last year, DRIP DRIP DRIP has been recast and rewritten for its new nationwide tour in 2020.

We are fortunate to have the only performance in Cornwall on this tour, as the company journeys across the country, ending with a long run at the Pleasance Theatre in London.

In its new form and with a new cast, the play retains it’s powerful examination of racism and political extremism, in the context of our beloved NHS in 2020.

As with all Pipeline’s work, and with Jon Welch’s writing, this is a play that merits seeing for a second time, especially as it has evolved in keeping with the changing circumstances facing the country and the NHS.

And if you missed it last time, grab the only chance to see it at The Tolmen Centre, Pipeline’s  home venue –  from where all their work has originated.

THE STORY: Bed 6, Oncology ward, a local NHS hospital.

Behind the blue curtain – Daniel, a refugee from Eritrea, now training to be a nurse; Rahmiya, a second-generation Muslim doctor; and David, elderly white cancer patient and discredited academic, fretting about his cat, Roger.

Over time, carers and cared-for become an unlikely, dysfunctional family.

But as life ebbs, reality splinters. Glimpsed in the cracks: the Nazi euthanasia programme, a burns clinic in Africa, a cross-Channel human shipment. And drip by drip David’s far-right ideology seeps out, as he prepares his final incendiary lecture (assuming he lives long enough to give it).

Bonds break, and suddenly both Daniel and Rahmiya’s right to call the UK home seems to hang on a dead man’s lips.

Pipeline Theatre, known for indelible characters and immersive design, takes you into the dark corners with unexpected humour and poignancy, busting taboos while offering its love-letter to the NHS.


Below are a few sample reviews from the 2019 tour:

‘Pipeline Theatre might be a tiny company from deepest Cornwall, but its work is creating theatre for the enquiring mind. What they have exposed in this production is profoundly alarming and deserves a much wider audience.’
British Theatre Guide

‘This is an astounding piece of studio theatre, Pipeline is a company deserving of greater recognition.’ 

“This piece made me laugh, brought a tear to my eye and flung me into worlds I’d never taken the time to venture into before. Perhaps most importantly, it left a lasting, powerful impression and a little hope that we might move past this time of division. In a time where nationalism is the newest superbug, this couldn’t come sooner.”

Tickets £10 (concessions £7)

Book Online

Tales from the Trees

Squashbox Theatre

‘Tales from the Trees’ is a terrific tangle of puppetry, storytelling, live music and comedy, with a theme that embraces natural history, folklore and ecology.

Listen! The trees have tales to tell. Meet some friendly forest creatures and encounter crazy characters from folklore and fairy tales!…

Tickets £5, Children £2.50, Family £12

Book Online

The Remains of Logan Dankworth

by Luke Wright

I believed that Fukayama line: the end of history. But History didn’t end, did it?

Logan Dankworth, columnist and Twitter warrior, grew up romanticising the political turmoil of the 1980s. Now, as the EU Referendum looms he is determined to be in the fray of the biggest political battle for years. Meanwhile, Logan’s wife Megan wants to leave London to better raise their daughter. As tensions rise at home and across the nation, something is set to be lost forever.

The third of Fringe First and Stage Award Winner Luke Wright’s trilogy of political verse plays looks at trust and privilege in the age of Brexit.

“Luke Wright’s performances rumble with rage, passion and humour. They are also peppered with brilliantly smart observations. You will leave his show brimming with energy, heart pounding and brain whirring.” The Guardian

Written & Performed by Luke Wright
Directed by Alex Thorpe
Dramaturgy by Sarah Dickenson
Scored by Polly Wright
Lighting Design by Joe Price

Co-commissioned by Norwich Arts Centre, National Centre for Writing, Colchester Arts Centre, Freedom Festival

Running time: 1h
Age Recommendation: 14+

Tickets £10

Book Online