Theatre / jules verne

Preview: Around the World in 80 Days

By steve wright, Friday Jun 26, 2015

Aimed at ages six and above and featuring a high-octane mix of clowning, live music and storytelling, New International Encounter’s adaptation of Jules Verne’s great globe-trotting epic promises a high-speed, madcap, transcontinental, race against the clock.

An international ensemble of six swap roles and instruments, with a piano becoming an elephant and suitcases making a steam ship, as Phileas Fogg and his faithful servant Passepartout aim to circumnavigate the globe in under 12 weeks.

“We have tried to keep the staging simple, using one big piece of scenery in lots of different ways and sometimes changing scale and asking the audience to do some imaginative work,” explains Director Alex Byrne. “We have also used a host of different musical styles to evoke the different stops on Fogg’s itinerary.

“The story is a big adventure – a race against time – but also a hymn to the machinations of timetables, the weather and the wonders of the age of steam. Verne’s main joke is, of course, that Fogg travels by all of these wonderful means of transport to so many wonderful places but appears (in a particularly British way) uninterested in what he sees.

“His servant, Passepartout, is fascinated and enchanted – and this contrast is part of the fun. Younger audiences will love the drama of the chase, as well as Fogg’s sense of adventure and desire to do the right thing.”

Around the World in 80 Days Wednesday, July 1 to Saturday, July 18, Tobacco Factory Theatres. For more info and to book tickets, visit

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