Dancer looking up in awe as a forest of different coloured foam lengths fall from above

What We Do

Award-winning company Theatre-Rites is a field leader in the creation of experimental theatre for children.

Acclaimed nationally and internationally, our touring productions and site responsive works stir the imagination and stimulate thought. We specifically promote understanding and enjoyment of ‘object-led’ theatre and celebrate the power of visuals, puppetry and animation by working in genuine collaboration with designers, visual artists, film-makers, puppeteers, musicians, composers, actors and dancers. 

We believe children should be offered theatrical experiences that are challenging and inspirational and we work hard to create theatre with the same high quality production values and integrity of content as the best adult theatre.

Since 1995 we have pioneered cross-artform theatre for children and family audiences, revolutionising original, non-adaptive theatre for the under 5s and improving production standards in theatre for 5 – 11s. We’ve also pioneered a unique programme of development, training and co-creation activities. 

Theatre-Rites is a registered charity and an Arts Council National Portfolio Organisation.  We were founded by the late Penny Bernand.  For the Guardian’s tribute to Penny - “her imagination and energy revolutionised children’s theatre” - please click here.

“If you were to make a list of the great British theatre companies of the past 10 years, it would almost certainly include Complicite, Improbable and Kneehigh – but Theatre-rites would be up there too.  If you have not heard of them, it is because they are the Cinderellas of the theatre world: they work exclusively with children.” The Guardian


We have a whole host of information on our website - in our shows section you can find lots of information about our current and past work, including trailers, cast lists and production shots. 

You can also explore our dedicated puppetry section and find out more about our Artistic Director, Sue Buckmaster

Take a look at the video below for an insight into some of our immersive and site-specific work. 


"Theatre-Rites, a company of genuine originality and flair"
- The Guardian
A puppeteer with his hand in a beautiful yellow glove which has a face on it, sitting on top of a tower of suitcases.