Bring a pencil or pen and some paper if you are taking your youngsters to Liz Pichon and The Tom Gates Brilliant Bands and Doodle Live tour when it stops at the Theatre Royal this half term.
Author and illustrator Liz Pichon is bringing her character Tom Gates to life with drawing, music and interactive fun.
The mum-of-three published her first Tom Gates book in 2011 and the tale scooped that year’s Roald Dahl Funny Prize, a 2012 Red House Children’s Book Award and a 2012 Waterstone’s Children’s Book Prize.
Liz published one of her first picture books, My Brother Boris, in 2004. It was an accomplishment made all the sweeter because Liz is dyslexic.
She said: “I always loved writing my own stories and poems and I loved drawing and cartoons but I am dyslexic and did not think it was anything I would be able to do as a job.
“I have always been creative so I went off to college to do graphic design.”
Liz went on to work for a graphics company and was then approached by a publisher to illustrate the stories of other authors. She then decided to take the plunge and pick up her pen.
Liz said: “I wanted to write my own stories and I wanted to illustrate funny books, if I wrote my own I wasn’t having to wait for someone else to do it.”
The Tom Gates’ series, which so far has 10 books, was not Liz’s first publication but it has proved extraordinarily popular.
Liz said: “When it won what was the Smarties Silver Prize it really gave me confidence, I thought ‘this is fun.’
“Tom, and Delia, started as a picture book idea but the publishers said there wasn’t enough of a story. It took quite a while but then it connected. What I love is I am writing the kind of book I would have wanted to read, there are lots of creative things for children to make and copy. It is so brilliant seeing how children react to the books and enjoy copying the style of drawings.”
The books include music from Tom’s favourite band, Dude 3, and this is also brought into the shows.
Liz said: “There is music in most of the Tom Gates’ books so I thought it would be fun to turn that into real music for the tour.
“Lots of kids probably haven’t heard a live band.”
The author also pledges to stay at the theatre until “the last person has gone” signing books, looking at youngsters pictures and having a chat after the show.
See Liz Pichon and The Tom Gates Brilliant Bands and Doodle Live tour at the Theatre Royal on October 23 at 1pm. Recommended ages 5-12 years old.
Full Price £16
Family of 4 £56
Booking fees – 50p per ticket in person/phone. £1.50 per ticket online
To book call 01843 292795 or click here