Fun puppetry that makes a point

A heartfelt puppet show for families is being performed at the Ludlow Fringe Festival this July.

Arts Alive have partnered with the festival to fund the performance from Sabotage Theatre Company. We Are Not Shellfish combines a vibrant visual aesthetic with a provocative story of protest and rebellion.

The story centres around Leah who finds a plastic bottle in the ocean with a phone number inside. Soon she finds herself in conversation with Ahmed, a boy adrift in the sea of humanity in the Calais Jungle. But when the text messages stop, Leah must summon all her courage to build a boat from salvaged plastic and embark on an epic voyage to find her friend.

We Are Not Shellfish is a brave tale about the power of friendship and how it can change our lives. The production tackles issues of the environment, the refugee crisis and political action in a vivid and engaging way.

Zoe Hinks wrote the play whilst working with The Flying Seagull Project, a charity which brings laughter to families in crisis around the world. She was inspired by how they use joy as a weapon to fight back against apathy and injustice. Zoe, who is also directing the show, said, “It feels like right now, more than ever, we need to be looking at what connects us. It is incredibly daunting for young people to honestly look at the challenges of environmental and social injustice today. It is our job as story-makers to help create a map navigating an uncertain future. It is important to make a play that uses a joyful approach; if it isn’t fun, then people close themselves off.”

We Are Not Shellfish will be performed at 11am on Saturday 9th July at Ludlow Fringe HQ, Castle Square, SY8 1AY and is suitable for adults and children aged 7+. Entry to the show is by donation and as part of the ticket bought for the festival. For more information visit


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