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The Heartstone Odyssey at Docklands Museum
18 March, 2017 @ 12:30 pm - 4:00 pm
It’s set to be an afternoon of magic and mystery as legendary actor, Sir Derek Jacobi, sets in motion the next London stage presentation of ‘The Heartstone Odyssey’, at Docklands Museum, a tale about a band of talking mice, astronomers who live at a Royal observatory, a young woman, Chandra, and their many friends on a quest to retrieve the enchanted Heartstone that is the spirit of their community. One fragment of the magical gem, broken in India around 200 years ago, was brought to Britain in 1796 by a mouse, Sailvoyage Stonekeeper, on board a tall ship bound for London. This will lead into an epic journey across Britain to find a special place to hide the piece so what better place to present this story than the setting of Docklands Museum, the location where Sailvoyage’s ship may have concluded its journey and from where the adventure began.
Sir Derek Jacobi is an iconic and award winning English actor and stage director who has enjoyed a successful screen and stage career appearing in productions such as ‘I, Claudius’ and ‘Hamlet’. He is a founder member of the UK’s Royal National Theatre and has won many awards. His television career includes starring in the critically acclaimed ‘I, Claudius’ for which he won a BAFTA. He is also known for starring roles in feature films such as ‘Gladiator’ and ‘Cinderella’ (2015) and other TV dramas like ‘Cadfael’ and ‘Last Tango in Halifax’.
The shows on the 18th March will be led by Sir Derek reading from the book, with Sitakumari, Indian dancer/storyteller performing alongside in a unique exciting and mesmerising presentation for all ages and presented as part of the Docklands Museum Family Festival.
This event however is more than a storytelling show; it is the second in a series of events to mark the start of a journey to the big screen, this time highlighting London as one of the main UK centres of the film development project being led by Barrie Osborne, Oscar winning producer on ‘The Lord of the Rings’ films, sci-fi ‘The Matrix’ and ‘The Great Gatsby’, who fell in love with the stories. He decided they could benefit from all the computer graphics wizardry that companies like Weta in New Zealand can deliver combined with writers, musicians and top named artists from east and west who are coming together in this unique project.
‘The Heartstone Odyssey’ is the work of writer and photo-journalist, Nick Sidle under his pen-name Arvan Kumar who conceived the story in India on a three-day journey between Mumbai and Chennai in the 1980’s.
Spanning hundreds of years, the stories draw on ancient mythology to tell a contemporary story, an epic tale with relevance for today. It’s a story that starts in British India stretching into our time, following real history so closely, blurring the line between reality and fantasy. The story sees our heroes travel the world from London, across England , north to Scotland, east to India and west to America. Encountering allies and adversaries in equal measure, Chandra and her whiskered champions battle onwards towards their prize. This is a story about challenging many different forms of prejudice and intolerance to achieve monumental goals, a story with a powerful resonance in the current time.
Barrie Osborne who has already toured filming locations in Scotland and England with Sitakumari says:
“This is an amazing story filled with wonderful characters and carries the reader along on one adventure after another. I am looking forward to seeing all the great ideas in the books realised on screen.”
Principal dancer and storyteller, Sitakumari says:
“The Heartstone Odyssey is a gripping epic adventure but also a moral tale for today. The books have been written to entertain, a story for children, that adults too, can enjoy and, as with all great timeless stories, will leave you seeing the world in a different way forever.”
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