A NORTH Yorkshire theatre company returns to the stage next week with four performances of its festive show.

Green Hammerton-based Badapple Theatre Company will be back on stage with a revival of its magical family show The Snow Dancer touring nationally from December 2 - December 6, with shows at York’s Joseph Rowntree Theatre from Tuesday - Thursday, December 14-16 at 1.30pm and 7pm.

The Snow Dancer is an original story by artistic director Kate Bramley, and stars actors Meg Matthews and Danny Mellor, with an original score by Jez Lowe.

It tells the story of the animals of The Great Wood, who are desperate to sleep, but it is too warm. Designed by Catherine Dawn, the characters must search for the Snow Dancer to make it snow if they will ever get to sleep.

Badapple’s trademark original comic shows have been delighting audiences of all ages for 21 years, and have toured in rural locations around the country. The company brings a full theatre experience to unusual, often tiny, spaces with significance to their communities. Their productions reflect world-wide issues which have an impact on village life.

Kate said: “Theatre is just storytelling and what better way to raise awareness of issues? The current climate emergency, referenced in The Snow Dancer, is something we have been concerned about for a long time.

“We want to create social discussion that’s relevant to our audiences and 21st century living. We can do this through theatre and constantly reinventing what that is: with music, sometimes dance, puppetry and on one occasion live baking.”

She said that Badapple as a company has been working on becoming more environmentally sustainable for over a decade, wherever possible reusing or recycling sets and sourcing sustainable clothing for costumes. By taking theatre to rural locations on tour, it reduced the environmental impact of audiences having to travel to one location to see a production.

The current run of The Snow Dancer will see the company stage the show for two school and three public performances at the Joseph Rowntree Theatre. Badapple has rarely performed at a ‘fixed’ venue in a city in the past 15 years.

Kate said: “We’ve struck up a great partnership with Joseph Rowntree Theatre in York and their community commitment and ethos is so synchronised to our core values. But it is harder for us to sustain a run of performances in one larger venue, having not specialised in this area for 15 years. But it’s just about making new friends in new areas and the return of The Snow Dancer to York this year is a great chance for the good folk of our nearest city to see what it is we do.”

As with all theatre companies, particularly touring companies, Badapple has experienced the hardships of the various lockdowns during the pandemic. One show which had been in production for 18 month and was booked into 30 venues was cancelled immediately. The pandemic was a time of crisis for the company but also one of reflection which has resulted in positive outcomes and new plans for the future.

More information on the tour dates can be found at badappletheatre.co.uk.