There’s An Immersive Theatre Adaptation of The Lost Words at Heaton Park

The production that features spoken word from Maxine Peak, stunning 3D installations and an impressive goldfinch nest auditorium.

By Emma Davidson | Last updated 29 September 2022

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An incredible outdoor immersive theatre adaptation of the children’s book, The Lost Words, is taking place in Heaton Park, Greater Manchester this week.

The Lost Words: Told in Gold is adapted from Robert Macfarlane and Jackie Morris’ book, The Lost Words and is directed by Collette Murray. The spoken word recordings are from some of the North’s best-loved voices, including Maxine Peake and Julie Hesmondhalgh.

The production features stunning 3D installations and an impressive goldfinch nest auditorium, set in a giant ten-metre dome across a woodland trail. During the show, the audience is encouraged to seek, find and speak the lost words of nature in the beautiful surroundings.

Chris Payne

This family-friendly show is performed by UnderSong Productions and led by a six-foot-four RAF heron (Pete Williamson), a folk-singing barn owl (Julie Power) and a breakdancing raven (Khagen Douglas) who bring Macfarlane’s words to life through song, dance and performance. Jackie Morris’s original illustrations inspire the artwork. 

The soundtrack features music from the Spell Songs album, created by some of the UK’s most renowned folk music talents interpreting Robert Macfarlane’s words. 

As Robert Macfarlane writes: “We’ve got more than 50% of species in decline. And names, good names, well used can help us see, and they help us care. We find it hard to love what we cannot give a name to. And what we do not love, we will not save.”

Chris Payne

As one of the few species to be on the rise in the UK is the goldfinch, many younger audience members have taken the opportunity to come dressed in gold and red. In the book, the goldfinch represents the hope to be found in children, “leaving their little gifts of light.”

Director, Collette Murray commented: “There are swathes of activity across the country regarding The Lost Words – but mainly in rural counties and districts. Our production aims to bring the same message of eco-responsibility to urban settings.” 

It’s Heaton Park run ends this Sunday, so grab tickets quick via the link below!