The Last Polar Bears tells the story of an old man and his dog, Roo, on a quest to the North Pole to see the polar bears before all the ice melts.
The production is an experiment in 'carbon-lite theatre.'
The Company is undertaking the four-week, 350-mile tour on bicycles, visiting primary schools in Ayrshire, Dumfries and Galloway, the Borders, East Lothian and Edinburgh. The play is performed in the natural light of school halls using puppetry and live music. The cast and crew are cycling on custom-built bikes, made from reclaimed bikes by Glasgow’s Bike Station. The cast will carry all costumes, set, props and personal belongings on their bikes throughout the tour. The bespoke vinyl panniers are made from recycled National Theatre of Scotland banners.
The play is directed by Joe Douglas, who also adapted the novel by Harry Horse.
Douglas writes, 'The idea is to tour a show across Scotland which, in its very form, engages with climate change'. Douglas is hoping to use the tour 'to take the temperature of how people are feeling about climate change.'
Throughout the tour, he will be conducting interviews and research as well as holding workshops with children.
As part of the production’s legacy, the National Theatre of Scotland is 'adopting' 17 Svalbard Polar Bears with the World Wildlife Fund to give to each of the primary schools on the tour.
The Last Polar Bears blog
National Theatre of Scotland page.
May - June 2012