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The Gruffalo celebrates its 15th Anniversary on stage

Gruffalo 2015 Ellie Bell, Timothy Richey & Owen Guerin (as The Gruffalo)
Gruffalo 2015 Ellie Bell, Timothy Richey & Owen Guerin (as The Gruffalo)

In July 2016 everyone’s favourite furry monster roars back into the West End to celebrate his 15th anniversary on stage! Tall Stories’ production of The Gruffalo, which first opened on the 12th May 2001, which was 18 months after the book was first published, returns to the Lyric Theatre, Shaftesbury Avenue by popular demand from 6th July until 4th September 2016.

Tall Stories’ The Gruffalo is based on the much-loved picture book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler. The most fearsome creature that never was – but is – takes to the stage in this enchanting production combining songs, laughter and storytelling theatre with just the right amount of scary fun! Set to a wonderfully catchy score with original music and lyrics, The Gruffalo is a must-see show which continues to entertain audiences the world over.

Olivia Jacobs and Toby Mitchell from Tall Stories said today “Back in 1999, when we asked Julia and Axel if we could adapt their then little-known book The Gruffalo for the stage, we had no idea how things would turn out. The original 2001 tour involved three actors in a car (not even a stage manager!) touring to schools and small venues. To go from there to the West End, Broadway and the Sydney Opera House has been quite a journey.

Gruffalo Trailer 2015

Tall Stories is also relaunching its website today, on World Book Day, offering improved access to all its shows and adding a ticket facility enabling audiences to buy tickets for Tall Stories shows from them directly as well as from their venues. Visit: www.tallstories.org.uk and www.gruffalolive.com

Join Mouse on a daring adventure through the deep dark wood in search of a nut, meeting the cunning Fox, the eccentric old Owl and the party mad Snake on the way. Will the story of the Gruffalo save Mouse from ending up as dinner for these wily woodland creatures? Armed with only a nut map and a little courage, Mouse must outwit them all. After all, there’s no such thing as a Gruffalo – is there?

Fantastic facts about The Gruffalo stage show
This year the live stage show celebrates its 15th anniversary, having opened on 12 May 2001 at Chester Gateway Theatre. Since then the show has performed in 14 countries and 5 continents, played twice at the Sydney Opera House, twice on Broadway, once at the Royal National Theatre and has had eight West End seasons.

  • The show has been performed in three languages with Mandarin, Xhosa and Icelandic versions currently in development.
  • In 2014-15, the show was seen by over 300,000 people.
  • 17 different actors have played the Gruffalo.
  • In January 2016 The Gruffalo kicked off Childline’s 30th anniversary year with a charity gala which raised £9,000, shared between Childline and Brighton-based charity Amaze.
  • In summer 2015 The Gruffalo hosted the first ever West End relaxed performance of a show for children aged three and up, working with Mousetrap Theatre Projects. Another relaxed performance will be held this summer, alongside BSL and audio-described performances.Fantastic facts about The Gruffalo book
  • The book was first published in 1999 and has sold over 13.5 million copies worldwide.
  • The book has been translated into over 50 languages
  • The Gruffalo is the UK‘s bestselling picture book.
  • Julia Donaldson is the UK’s bestselling author (including adult and children’s books).
  • April 2016 marks the 100th UK print run, bringing total UK sales to nearly 2.5 million copies.
  • Voted the nation’s favourite bedtime story by BBC Radio 2 listeners, The Gruffalo is a real modern classic.
  • The Gruffalo has been adapted into a BAFTA – and Oscar-nominated film which is shown each year at Christmas on the BBC and has sold over 1.5 million DVDs.

Buy London Theatre Tickets

The Gruffalo at the Lyric Theatre
Running Time: 55 minutes
Age Restrictions:
Age Recomendation 3+ (Guide only)
Booking From: 6th July 2016
Booking Until: 4th September 2016


  • Neil Cheesman

    First becoming involved in an online theatre business in 2005 and launching londontheatre1.com in September 2013. Neil writes reviews and news articles, and has interviewed over 150 actors and actresses from the West End, Broadway, film, television, and theatre. Follow Neil on Twitter @LondonTheatre1

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