“Better than Hamilton … “

So, last week we performed at the Leicester Square Theatre in that there London. A great afternoon was had by all, especially the audience. After the show, as we always do, we sat and chatted to people. Just as most people were wending their way out of the theatre Frank Skinner and son came and had a chat and a couple of photographs. It was all very pleasant and jolly. This last weekend he mentioned the show and the photograph opportunity on his programme on Absolute Radio. He was very complementary about the show and so I thought we ought to pop the clip up here so everyone can have a listen … just click on the link! (It will take you to our Facebook page but please come back and see if the show is coming near you).

Frank on Absolute Radi0 chatting about Noggin!

We still have a few performances left in this little tour, to find out where we are follow this link to Where and When …

The Nogs Go Forth … South, East and West.

Dear Reader … the Nogs are on the road again! We started off at Forest Forge in Ringwood (where we also rehearsed; more about that later) and then onto The Rose Theatre, Kingston where we had a lovely time … and so did the audiences if the following couple of reviews are anything to go by.

“I haven’t laughed so regularly and with such uncomplicated pleasure for a long time.” Culture Vulture

“The show is a winning mix of puppetry, projections and a sharp script. It is particularly commendable that both the projections and the puppets resonate with the original series with fragments of the original cartoon seemingly woven into the show, but it’s the Pynthonesque nature of the production that adds a new, delicious dimension to the play, creating a whole new fan base for the Nogs.” Curious Mum

I’ll put links to these two lovely reviews at the end of this post as I know you fliberty-jibbets will be flitting about without reading the rest of this post!

Forest Forge Theatre Company were amazing (there is a link to their website at the end of this post). We arrived at their wonderful building (studio, workshop, offices, green room and loads of equipment) at the start of our short re-rehearsal period … spent a bit of time worrying about our broken down van … then got down to the serious business of drinking tea and eating iced fancies. Once this preliminary activity was done and dusted we got onto the real reason we were there … trying to remember a script and what we did on stage. The long and the short of it is that we, over a wet week in the New Forest, put together The Sagas of Noggin the Nog for a new tour.

Forest Forge, Ringwood

John Wright, our Director who helped us to make the piece in the first place, turned up and threw some new and exciting spanners in the works, giving us new games and provocations to take the play to a new level … much fun was had! We then decamped to The Rose Theatre, Kingston where we unpacked the now not broken down van and spent a happy few hours carrying heavy things, building the set and playing with technology and lighting. We had a rehearsal and then performed seven shows in four days to some really lovely audiences.

We are now about to head of west … Bridport and Taunton and the … well … east, south and north. To see where we are going follow this link to find the where and when.

Hopefully we’ll see you at a venue in the near future … keep popping back here to find out what we’ve been up to!




Noggin Rides Once More …

The holidays are over. Graculus, the Great Green Bird, leads the Nogs back to the land of Nog. Noggin and Nooka resume their reign, Queen Grunehilde resumes her rightful place (in bed, sleeping) and ThorNogson dries his knitted woollen swimming trunks and hangs them up until next year.

In the real world the lovely fellows from Third Party and Mischievous Theatre take to the road once more with The Sagas of Noggin the Nog directed by John Wright. 


The Stage

“Grizzled, worried and utterly charming, Noggin the Nog’s tea-loving viking hoard – of four – is well-cast in this suitably delightful adaptation of Oliver Postgate’s original 1959 children’s TV cartoon.”

Accompanied by the Great Green Bird Graculus, the lovely fellows go North on a journey of adventure and discovery to battle the fearsome Ice Dragon and the dastardly deeds of Noggin’s wicked uncle, Nogbad the Bad.

The Great Green Bird, Graculus

The classic stories by Oliver Postgate and Peter Firmin, which became one of the most iconic television series of the 1970s, are playfully retold using puppets, original music, film – and a cast of silly Vikings will, once more, be showing at a theatre near you.

Follow the Great Green Bird … and this link to find out where and when.

See you soon!

A Change of Nog Togs!

The sun is getting higher in the sky and warmer to boot. Noggin, Nooka, ThorNogson and Graculus the Great Green Bird have popped on their swimming togs and are having a lazy time … sitting in the azure waters of The Hot Water Valley.

1205809 Noggin and Nooka are getting all lovey-dovey and Graculus the Great Green bird is fluttering about meeting up with his Great Green bird family and ThorNogson is doing battle with his knitted woollen swimming trunks. They are all having a lovely time.

Meanwhile … back in the real world, Third Party and Mischievous Theatre are working on a number of new projects and so are having a bit of a break from The Sagas of Noggin the Nog … but they will be back … we don’t know when … we don’t know where … but we will be back!

So please, check in here from time to time to keep abreast of all that is Noggin the Nog!

In the meantime …. follow the link below to see a promo video of the show from the very early days; it has changed, we think for the better, since this was filmed but the atmosphere is the same. Enjoy!

A little Noggin Promo …

Viking Flatbread with Thor Nogson (His Mum’s Recipe)

Viking Flatbread Recipe

Flour, butter, salt, sultanas, honey and an egg.

Flour, butter, salt, sultanas, honey and an egg.

Vikings ate a really tasty and good for you flatbread.
Thor Nogson’s mum made the best flatbread in the world:
here is her recipe. It’ll take an hour or so to make.
She used to bake it on a large stone in the middle of the fire
but you can put it on a baking sheet and cook it in the oven.

Thor Nogson likes his flatbread with honey and sultanas but you could use sugar and raisins or currants or you could make it savoury by adding cheese . You can be as creative as you like! Then eat it like a Viking!



250g (9 ooz) plain wholemeal flour (you can use white but don’t cook it for quite so long),

1 beaten egg,

185g (6.5 oz) butter,

a pinch of salt,

a handful of sultanas.

A spoonful of honey. (you can be really creative and try other fruit, like blackberries, raspberries, currants, nuts, anything really, give it a go)

Put the flour and salt in a mixing bowl, make a well in the middle and add the beaten egg

A beaten egg

A beaten egg

Cut the butter into small pieces and add it to the flour and egg



A handful of sultanas

A handful of sultanas

Add the Honey and sultanas or whatever fruit you’ve decided on



Squish them all together

Squish them all together


Get your hands in and squish it all together.



Roll it into a ball then let it rest for half an hour (you can rest too after all that squishing)

With flour on your rolling pin, roll the dough out flat

With flour on your rolling pin, roll the dough out flat

Now, roll out the dough with a rolling pin until it’s thin (put flour on your board and rolling pin or it’ll stick)





Fold the dough in half ...

Fold the dough in half …

Fold the dough in half, then half again.




Roll it out once more and repeat. Then squish it into a ball and leave it to rest covered with a tea towel for about 15 minutes

Flatten it out then roll it into a round about as thick as your finger.

Flatten it out then roll it into a round about as thick as your finger.

Roll the dough into a round shape and as thick as your finger.
put the dough on a huge hot stone in the middle of the fire … or put it on a baking sheet and bake it in a pre-heated oven at 220 degrees centigrade (Gas mark 7/425 degrees Fahrenheit) for 25 to 30 minutes.




Pop your oven gloves on and take the bread out of the oven when it is golden brown.

Pop your oven gloves on and take the bread out of the oven when it is golden brown.

When it is golden brown take it out of the oven, let it cool a little then eat it like a viking!







... and then eat!

… and then eat it like a Viking!

Why Noggin the Nog?

Noggin the Nog enthrals the average British family

Noggin the Nog enthrals the average British family

The Sagas of Noggin the Nog were first shown on British television in 1959. It was made by Peter Firmin and Oliver Postgate. They also made Pogle’s Wood, Ivor the Engine, Bagpuss, the Clangers and loads of others: the stuff that many childhoods were made of. The films were made in less frenetic times. The stories were beautifully crafted and the characters carefully drawn … but the films were also quite, quite mad! Vikings who appear to come from Surbiton, who are constantly stopping for tea and toast, who will go on any adventure at the drop of a hat. And what adventures! Travelling to the other ends of the earth to meet a possible bride. Travelling to the Hot Water Valley to do battle with an Ice Dragon that is ruining the farmer’s crops. There was a Goon-ish silliness about the tales. It was these qualities that attracted us to the Sagas and made us want to create a piece of theatre that would do justice to the marvellous nonsense of Firmin and Postgate.

Queen Grunhilde the Lazy One and her maid, Ignora!

Queen Grunhilde the Lazy One and her maid, Ignora!

The stories feel utterly modern though laced with the sensibilities of gentler times. When we came to make the play we referenced the Goons, Monty Python and cartoons that adorned our telly screens … Tom and Jerry, Road Runner and even Scooby Doo and Danger Mouse. The resulting piece of theatre is Pythonesque in its clever silliness, Goon-ish in its character driven narrative, cartoonish in its “feel” and Firmin and Postgate-ish in its attitudes.

“The Nogs are a charmingly mild-mannered bunch of Vikings. They sound a bit like Terry Jones, they look a bit like him too. Except for Noggin. Noggin the Nog, their young leader, is handsome in a Viking sort of way. From my seat in the audience I was almost picked to marry him. But Noggin decided on the Princess of the Nooks instead. They bonded over cocoa and hot buttered toast.
Buttered toast is very important to the Nogs. There’s no threat so desperate, be it storm-lashed seas or marauding dragons, that they can’t stop to make toast round the sine qua non of Viking icoNOGraphy: a glowing camp fire.
The first ever stage production of Peter Firmin and Oliver Postgate’s much loved television series retains the homespun, low-tech aesthetic of the original without looking in any way amateurish.
While much of the low-key humour derives from the sort of knowledge of the series which belongs to the older members of the audience, there’s still plenty of fun for the younger ones. It’s a close call as to who enjoys it more, the children or their grandparents.
An expertly acted, beautifully realised stage play with the warm charm of a bedtime story.”

Amanda Kriek’s ★★★★ review for The Independent

I have reprinted this because it sort of bears out what I was getting at.

RWD15_Noggin The Nog_Dragon PNG

The Sagas of Noggin the Nog play is a fairly gentle madcap dash with live music, created on an old and charming harmonium, high-tech projection of Peter Firmin’s original drawings, beautiful puppets both small and, in the case of the dragon, blooming big, some clever theatrical tricks and a cast of Vikings that always appear to get through to the end of the play despite much giddy recklessness and a terribly English absurdity en route.

Nostalgia is often levelled at the play and, of course, the play is based on a 1959 stop motion film, so there is a nostalgic feel to the piece but it is also very much a modern play. It does the play a dis-service to think of it as purely nostalgic. The play is truly cross-generational (I hate that phrase, it sort of puts the play into a pigeon hole that is so big you could get a Giant Bustard in it) … it has been performed to people from babes in arms to much more elderly people (87 years old I seem to remember in one audience). And is enjoyed by all … everyone says that, I know but it really is true of Noggin the Nog. The play is sort of “panto-esque” (not my phrase) but only in the sense that it has a baddy, a few songs, is funny and has a sort of Dame in Queen Grunhilde … but it differs in that it does not have one section for children, dirty smutty innuendos for adults and an inapposite modern pop song for the fairy tale character to “get down” to … the stories and the way we portray them are genuinely accessible and can be understood and often laughed at by all.

So … come and see it.

Follow this link to find out where and when.

Noggin is on the road again …

Oh no, not again ... I get van sick!

Oh no, not again … I get van sick!

So, the intrepid Nogs once again take to the road. It is just a short tour this time but we do pack quite a few shows in. From Wimbledon to Buxton to Hull to Peterborough and then next year (if we aren’t too old by then) we head to who knows where! So if you are anywhere near any of the places mentioned above (or even if you are not, it is well worth travelling for) come and say hello!

It has been a long time since we Nogs got together to perform at the Brighton Festival: which was, by the way, absolutely fabulous fun and with a real festival feel to it.

We will be starting this new excursion into the vast interior of the United Kingdom in the wonderful Polka Theatre (For dates and times follow the link at the bottom of the page)and then we travel North, then norther and then a tad southerly, all to bring the wonderful stories of Peter Firmin and Oliver Postgate (They of The Clangers, Bagpuss and Ivor the Engine fame to name but a few) to a wider audience of families, children, adults who haven’t yet grown up, nostalgia groupies and those interested and excited by a “pythonesque” play about a bunch of Vikings! In other words; more or less everybody. Even if you weren’t raised on the slightly bizarre stories and the wonderfully hypnotic voice of Oliver Postgate I promise you will enjoy the show.

We had huge audiences, a number of 5 and 4 ★ reviews from the National press and some wonderful conversations with whole generations of families last year at the Edinburgh Festival. The Sagas of Noggin the Nog is a genuine family show, so bring the children, bring grandma and grandpa and great grandma and grandpa and great, great grandma and grandpa and … you get the idea.

The play is based on the first two stories that were first shown on the BBC in 1959 and 1960; How Noggin became King of the Nogs and The Ice Dragon. We use live action, live music, puppets, video projection and a great deal of humour to tell these wonderful tales and although Oliver Postgate is not still with us, Peter Firmin, the artist who created the visuals is, and he and Daniel Postgate (Oliver’s son) are great supporters of the show and both laughed “like drains” at the performances at the Theatre Royal Brighton.

So, see you there!

Follow this link to take you to the Nog Log.