The Hatchling

A spectacular dragon will hatch in Plymouth City Centre on 14 August, growing to the size of a double-decker bus.

The Hatchling is a ground-breaking outdoor theatrical performance that will unfold over a weekend of events and reaches an extraordinary finale over the coast of Plymouth, on 14 and 15 August 2021.

Our beautiful visitor will hatch in the city, build herself a nest and then attempt to take to the skies in a bid for her freedom.

Along the way, she’ll explore the city, and as she roams, she’ll encounter a series of events from intimate interactions to city-wide performances, prepared especially for her majestic visit.

The Hatchling walking (Landscape). Credit - Carl Robertshaw-min


Apples and Snakes have commissioned three poets – Rebecca Tantony, Chris White and Shagufta K Iqbal, to create pieces based around dragon mythology, which will be performed during the event.

At the end of her journey our hatchling will undergo an incredible metamorphosis, unfurl her wings, and attempt to soar over the sea at sunset! With a wingspan of over 20 metres, our hatchling is the world’s largest human-operated puppet to attempt flight.

Created by a leading design team specialising in puppetry, kites and immersive theatre, this is an unforgettable world premiere taking place in Plymouth this summer.

The Hatchling will bring together artists, community groups and city partners to create a public artwork of ground-breaking ambition – a cultural icon that will unite people from all walks of life.

Plan your visit

Make a trip of it! There’s so much going on over the course of the weekend and a full weekend trip will allow you to fully experience the dragon’s visit.

Saturday 14 August from midday:

The dragon will hatch from its egg in the city centre and begin her exploration of the city. She’ll be meeting various people from across the city until she nests down, around about bedtime.

Sunday 15 August from midday:

After a morning slumbering, she will rise after brunch and start to amble through the city. She’ll be on the Hoe in the evening and getting ready to fly into the air and over the sea from sunset. To catch the flight plan to be with us from 8pm until 10pm. Grab a picnic blanket, snacks, a thermos (or wine!) and nestle in so that you don’t miss out on this once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Come along and experience this epic event with us all.

Creative Team

The Hatchling is produced by Trigger – an organisation creating and producing surprising live and digital events that interrupt daily life, reimagine and revive public spaces, and put audiences at the centre of the action. Trigger’s programme aims to create accessible, inclusive and boundary pushing work which is often sited outdoors and/or digital.

Conceived by Angie Bual, Artistic Director and producer at Trigger
Directed by Mervyn Millar, Puppetry Director (War Horse, Significant Object)
Designed by Carl Robertshaw, Production Designer (Ellie Goulding, Bjork)

Shagufta K Iqbal
Rebecca Tantony
Chris White

Associate Creative Team
Sound Designer – Daniel Balfour
Lighting Designer – Matt Daw
Composer – Ruth Chan
The People’s Assembly Director – Mark Maughan
Live Music – Dom Coyote

Cameron Balloons
Russell Beck Studio
Adrian Snell
Scenic Artists – Charcoal Scenic Ltd

Production Team
Production Manager – Dock Street Events
Costume Maker – Joey A Frenette
Flight Director – Stephen Hoath
Assistant Director – Nicole Redfern
Costume Supervisor & Design Assistant – Jane Ripley

Stage Management
Senior Stage Manager – Richard Herrick
Stage Manager & Show Caller – Charlotte Hall
Assistant Stage Manager – Chloe Walker

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