Image by Andy Rasheed

By Erich Kästner, adapted for the stage by Nicki Bloom

How do we find our friends in the world? How do we work together to defeat tricksters?

Never underestimate the determination of a child! Young Emil catches a train to visit family in the big city. Something valuable is stolen. But the thief soon discovers Emil was not such an easy target. A group of quick-thinking and resourceful children rallies around. Can a bunch of kids work together to uncover and outsmart the true criminal?

Adapted for the stage by Nicki Bloom, Kästner’s 1929 novella is more than a ‘good romp’; it broke ground for the independent-children-versus-devious-adults story genre. Streetwise city kids, a hard-working single mother and Emil’s past brush with the law add grit and nuance to this satisfying tale.

In Slingsby’s signature intimate theatrical style, Emil and the Detectives is told by two skilled actors immersed in smoke and mirrors, miniature worlds and a cinematic score. Dark and light, intrigue and delight for audiences.

“The company’s theatre productions always have a sense of wonder and magic, and Emil and the Detectives delights, intrigues and astonishes its audience…Emil and the Detectives is an outstanding piece of children’s theatre which makes it an outstanding piece of theatre and an experience to be savoured by all.” – InDaily, Greg Elliott

“…Emil and the Detectives adds to Slingsby’s already substantial record of presenting entertainment for families that actually deal with important issues.” – The Advertiser, Peter Burdon

Listen to the synopsis 

Cast & Crew
Director: Andy Packer
Playwright: Nicki Bloom
Composer and Sound Design: Quincy Grant
Designer: Wendy Todd
Costume Designer: Ailsa Paterson
Lighting Designer: Geoff Cobham
Technical Design: Chris Petridis
Animation Director: Luku Trembath

Age suitability
8+ years

Warnings
Lighting effects, haze and smoke effects

Emil and the Detectives – Slingsby – Promo from Slingsby on Vimeo.

Adapting the classic children’s novel that redefined the whole kids-versus-adults genre, acclaimed immersive theatre company Slingsby use the magic of lighting and shadows to create an intriguing and enchanting story about never underestimating the determination of a child.

Suitable for Year Levels 4-12

Approved for SACE Stage 2.

Emil and the Detectives is supported by

Naomi Hobson: Adolescent Wonderland
  • Visual Arts

Naomi Hobson: Adolescent Wonderland

18th November 2022 — 1st September 2023

Naomi Hobson’s Adolescent Wonderland is a series of photographs that tell the real-life story of young Aboriginal people in remote Australia

View event
Strange World
  • Film

Strange World

8th December 2022 — 11th January 2023

Mild science fiction themes.

Presented by Country Arts SA

Strange World introduces a legendary family of explorers, the Clades, as they attempt to navigate an uncharted, treacherous land.

View event

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