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INTERVIEW | Adam McKenzie Wylie talks Paddington™ Lo-Commotion

Updated: Aug 8, 2023




This Summer, join Paddington™ TM in an immersive outdoor adventure staged across the beautiful grounds of Blenheim Palace! Created by Histrionic Productions in collaboration with The Copyrights Group (a STUDIOCANAL

company),


The show will take audiences on foot through the UNESCO World Heritage Site to meet their favourite characters from the Paddington™ stories and search for ‘buried treasure’. There will also be an opportunity to hop on board a real locomotive subject to availability on the day.

I got to speak to the producer of the experience for Histrionic Productions Adam McKenzie Wylie to find out more about Paddington™ Lo-commotion and more about Histrionic productions.


 

What is Paddington Lo-commotion about?


The show is about Paddington’s latest adventure at Blenheim Palace. Paddington journeys from Windsor Gardens in London on the train to learn to drive Blenheim’s mini-locomotive: but as the show title suggests – it doesn’t quite go to plan!


How have you made the show immersive? And how do you think the

audience will react?


It’s all about real proximity to the performers and giving the audience

agency. The show is both immersive and interactive. Audiences enjoy close up contact with Paddington as the story unfolds, they help Mrs Bird (who acts as chaperone throughout) and they even search for buried treasure with Mr Gruber. This year we are using a train, a camper van and even a working fire engine as props. The reaction is one of sheer delight.


Were there any challenges putting a show on outdoors?


Always from a production perspective, but children and for the most part their families, don't seem to care two hoots about the weather, as long as they come wearing sensible kit.


How would you describe what Histrionic Productions do?


We allow audiences to leap right into the pages or celluloid of their favourite book or film through the creation of extraordinary theatrical experiences.


What do you want the audience to take away from any of your productions?


That they have come face to face with their favourite character and been part of a memorable, magical story – and perhaps a soft toy!



 

How do you decide what would adapt well into an immersive show?


We choose only the most popular IP, in this case in the family market, and explore how to most naturally allow audiences to step into that world.


What would be the ultimate book or story that you would love to adapt into one of your productions?


The Hobbit. A fellowship’s adventure to the lonely mountain.


What has been the best reaction from the audiences at Paddington Lo-

commotion?


Absolute horror that Mr Gruber’s camper van is on fire – and sheer delight as

the fire engine arrives to tackle it. It's unusual and memorable – and of course every young person loves fire engines.


What is your favourite part of the show? And what is your favourite

sandwich?


I love the scene in the goods yard when Paddington gets stuck mending the train.

It's a perfect immersive moment – it even smells right creosote and engine oil. That's all part of the multi-sensory experience.


I’m a cheese, pickle and crusty roll fan.


Describe “Paddington Lo-commotion” in one sentence?


A must-see, live Paddington adventure, a perfect family show for those that love trains, fire engines and of course Paddington himself.



 

At the end of the 55-minute adventure, families can enjoy free arts and crafts-based activities, and visit the Paddington gift shop, as well as delicious food and drink at the many restaurants and cafés around Blenheim Palace.


Additionally, everyone can add an official photo with Paddington and the chance to drive a mini ROVER emergency vehicle for younger audiences, aged 4 - 10, to the standard cost of the show ticket.


The show is directed and written by Calum Finlay and designed by Damien Stanton, both of whom collaborated with puppetry designer Jimmy Grimes.

The show is supported by GWR and Jaguar Land Rover Classic.



 

Important show info


PADDINGTON LO-COMMOTION

Blenheim Palace

Suitable for all ages

- 55-minute slots throughout the day

- Tuesday to Thursday 10am - 2.10pm

- Friday to Sunday & Bank Holiday Monday, 10am - 3.30pm


click to book tickets/prices


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