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The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show National Tour

Media Release: October 28, 2014 in Theatre |

“Story time doesn’t get more magical than this”

Brightly coloured caterpillar One of the most-read and iconic children’s books of all time, The Very Hungry Caterpillar emerges off the page in a masterful theatrical experience in a World Premiere at Sydney Festival in 2015 and will then tour to Melbourne, Brisbane, Penrith, Queanbeyan and Newcastle.

This brand new Australian made show will excite, educate and entertain new readers and first-time theatre-goers, while for those who grew up with these books will delight in experiencing one of the most popular children’s books (celebrating its 45th year) ever written for the first time on the Australian stage.

With puppets made by acclaimed New York company, Puppet Kitchen, these 75 puppets will be delivered to Sydney in October by some of the worlds master puppet makers, boasting four Daytime Emmy awards and alumnus from Jim Henson’s Muppet Workshop, staff at Puppet Kitchen have worked on smash hit shows like Avenue Q on Broadway, Disney’s The Bear in the Big Blue House, Sesame Street and many many more.

Created by the genius of children’s literature, Eric Carle, his incredible stories will come to life on stage in this enchanting show. Featuring some other delightful characters from three of Eric Carle’s bestselling classics tales including, ‘Mr. Seahorse’, ‘The Very Lonely Firefly’ and ‘The Artist Who Painted A Blue Horse’.

I hope the performances will be enjoyed by many and that the colorful characters will bring comfort and joy to all who see the stories that have been so carefully produced. It is uplifting to see such beautiful and cheerful works inspired by my characters! I am delighted by the puppets, and am honored to work with the creative team – Thank you, for bringing my stories to life for the stage. I hope my books — and this show — will inspire you and your imagination.

Eric Carle

Producers Jonathan Worsley and Michael Sieders are both thrilled to be entrusted with transforming these beloved books into a theatrical event for children. 

The Very Hungry Caterpillar is a seminal children’s book, one that has introduced generations of children into the wonderful world of storytelling. And now, we have the opportunity to do the very same – to introduce a whole new generation to the story telling through theatre, for many this will be their first experience and we want to make it a magical one. To faithfully take a book that means so much to so many people, and create a new interpretation for the stage is both a privilege and an honour.

Jonathan Worsley

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show will be an adventure into the world of Eric Carle, it will be as if audiences will be transported into a giant pop up book filled with amazing characters from an 8ft red crocodile, a life size yellow cow, an under water world filled with all types of sea creatures to a three meter beautiful butterfly and the hero of the show The Very Hungry Caterpillar… this show will light children’s imagination on fire and delight the generations of readers that have grown up with these books.

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show aims to excite new readers and new theatre goers, while taking every generation on a trip back into their childhood to reclaim their imagination.

There will also be a range of activities that will accompany the show including a selection of signed lithographs from Eric Carle Studios. These beautiful art works will be on display in the foyer of Riverside theatre from December 2014. There will also be an activity zone for kids to stick around after the show and create their very own hungry caterpillar.

In addition, to ensure enjoyment of this production for all children, a special Relaxed performance will be conducted for children with special needs and autism. This modified performance will be on Wednesday 14th January at 3pm and is specifically designed so that all children have the opportunity to experience the show in a safe and relaxed environment. This means that the doors to the auditorium will remain open so that children and parents can come and go as they need, house lights will remain on to provide easy access, and a chill out zone will be set up outside the theatre with a live feed so children that need to leave can still watch the show.

Join us in celebrating the world premiere of The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show.


8–18 January 2015
Riverside Theatres
23 March – 2 April 2015
Chapel off Chapel
13–19 July 2015
Round House Theatre, Kelvin Grove
24th–26th September 2015
The Q Theatre, Penrith
30th September – 4th October 2015
The Queanbeyan Performing Arts Centre
9th–10th October 2015
The Civic Theatre

Presented by JWR Productions Australia & Michael Sieders Presents

Created by Jonathan Worsley Director Naomi Edwards Producer Michael Sieders Set Designer James Browne Puppets created by Puppet Kitchen Costume Designer Andrea Espinoza Lighting Designer Nicholas Rayment Composer / Sound Designer Shannon Brown

For all booking details please visit the tickets page at

Media & Interviews

Jacqui Bonner or on 0411 473 198
Emma Collison or on 0418 584 795

Artists Information and Biographies

Eric Carle, Author and Illustrator

​Acclaimed creator of brilliantly illustrated and innovatively designed picture books for very young children, Eric Carle has illustrated more than seventy books, many best sellers, most of which he also wrote, and more than 127 million copies of his books have sold around the world. His best-known work, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, now-classic and favourite of millions of readers has been translated into 60 languages and sold over 38 million copies since it was first published in 1969.

Jonathan Worsley, Creator and Executive Producer

​Jonathan’s raison d’être is to entertain and push boundaries, combining a career in film, theatre, puppetry, television, commercials and music video. Aside from the magical journey of creating The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show, with Eric Carle Studio, Jonathan co-wrote and originally produced the puppet-parody show Thank you for being a friend, featuring Miami’s most famous broads (The Golden Girls) which has since been licensed for further productions worldwide.

Other recent projects include the documentary ROAD TO PRIDE ROCK:The Making of the Lion King and the screenplay Coming of Age developed with Screen New South Wales and the Dungog Film Festival’s In the Raw program. Accolades include Cannes Lion nomination in addition to multiple Clio and Media Federation Awards, High Commendations at Australian Cinematographer’s Guild [ASC], Best Television Current Affairs at the National Media Awards for the unvarnished documentary about life on the street in Boy from the Blue Room, and ‘Best Unproduced Screenplay’ at the MTV Awards for Satisfaction, a satirical tale of becoming an assistant on the world’s most expensive perfume commercial.

Jonathan is also a former protégé of Baz Luhrmann with a career that began during film school after he convinced his formidable mentor to take him on as an apprentice at the age of 17. Jonathan worked with Baz on the US production of La Boheme and the CHANEL No 5 commercial featuring Nicole Kidman.

Naomi Edwards, Director

​Naomi Edwards is a theatre director whose diverse practice covers opera, theatre, and theatre for and by young people, education and community arts. Her current projects include The Waiting Room exploring the history of IVF with playwright Kylie Trounson, in development with Melbourne Theatre Company, writing and directing a new opera for 3–8 year olds called When Moon Dust Falls, commissioned by Victorian Opera.

She was the first Artistic Director Residency with Patch Theatre Company. A recent recipient of the Gloria Dawn/Gloria Payten and Mike Walsh Fellowship, she participated in the Lincoln Centre’s Directors Lab in New York. Her recent production of Cautionary Tales for Children received a Helpmann nomination for Best Children’s Production.

​Puppet Kitchen is a full-service puppet design, build, and performance studio in New York’s East Village, founded in 2008 by Emily DeCola, Michael Schupbach and Eric Wright. The PK trio brings a multidisciplinary, “soup-to-nuts” approach to everything we do.

As designers, directors, performers, and builders, the Puppet Kitchen blends style with engineering to create dynamic visual stories. Our fluency in many puppetry styles, including marionettes, TV-style, direct manipulation, shadows, and toy theatre, allows us to create just the right puppet approach to every project. Our work has been featured in a variety of media: theatre, TV, advertising, web, opera and dance, to name a few.

Some of our favourite collaborative partners and clients include The Public Theatre, H&M, The Disney Channel, Twisted Pixel Games, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, New York City Opera, Mills Entertainment, Folkmanis Puppets, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, The Bronx Zoo, Disney Theme Parks, PBS, TheaterWorks USA, The HERE Theatre,, Leslie Feist, Ensemble Studio Theatre, and Dance Theatre Workshop.

Our original production series PK Presents creates original programming for all ages with puppetry and music. Our repertoire ranges from What Are You Eating? a show about food politics for adults to Four Seasons in Buenos Dairies, a goofy but sincere bovine “Bonnie & Clyde” caper for young audiences based on Astor Piazzolla’s tangos, to the upcoming Pet vs Man — an improvised debate show pitting pet owners against puppet versions of their household companions.

Michael Sieders, Producer

Michael is a graduate from the University of Western Sydney’s Theatre Theory and Practice degree in 2002. Michael has worked on various theatre and film productions as a production manager, writer, producer and director. Michael has also held the position of the Operations Manager for the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA).

Michael’s most recent theatre credits include Associate Producer S–27 by Sarah Grochala (Griffin Independent 2010), Producer Fool for Love by Sam Shepard (B Sharp 2010), Producer The Brothers Size by Tarell Alvin McCraney (Griffin Independent 2011), Producer The Coming World by Christopher Shinn (Darlinghurst Theatre Company 2011), Producer Porn. Cake by Vanessa Bates (Griffin Independent 2012), Producer Songs for the Fallen by Sheridan Harbridge (Rock Surfers Theatre Comapny 2012, The Reginald Season 2013 and Brisbane Festival 2013). In 2014 Michael produced the World Premiere production of Every Second by Vanessa Bates as part of Darlinghurst Theatre Company’s 2014 season in their new space, The Eternity Playhouse.

Michael has also produced four tours for Critical Stages as their NSW producer from 2011 – 2013, and two national tours as producer for Performing Lines.

James Browne, Set Designer

James graduated from the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA) in 2001 with a degree in Set and Costume Design before attending the Australian Film Television and Radio School (AFTRS) in Art Direction. He has designed in all facets of the field in theatre, film and events. James designed the sets for the Love Cooking Festival in London as well as Jamie Oliver’s live stadium show in Melbourne and Rick Stein’s show in New Zealand.

Event designs include the Prague Castle for the Visa Board Dinner, the Australian Jockey Club in 2007 and various floats in the Sydney Mardi Gras Parade. James has worked on television shows such as Survivor, All Saints and Australian Idol. James designed a development production of Faust for the Sydney Theatre Company and costumes for New Breed for the Sydney Dance Company.

Other theatre design credits include Love Bites, Fat Swan, Side by Side, Ordinary Days, The Last 5 Years, the Singapore Theatre Practice, Iota, NIDA, the Human Nature Motown National Tour, Empire, and Just For Laughs at the Sydney Opera House starring John Cleese, David Campbell’s Let’s Go national 2012 tour and Trevor Ashley’s Little Orphan Trashley, Beached at Griffin Theatre Co and Marriage of Figaro at the Australian Conservatorium of Music.

James was the associate designer on Graeme Murphy’s AIDA for Opera Australia and Stuart Maunder’s SHOUT! James’ set for Reg Livermore’s TURNS (national tour) was nominated for the 2012 Greenroom Awards.

James has recently designed for Craig Ilott and Ignatius Jones on the shows for Pacha Sydney, Do You Hear the People Sing?, in Shanghai and Pete the Sheep for Monkey Baa.