Students at Stagecoach Liverpool had an amazing time bringing a musical adaptation of local children’s author Andy Kenwright’s book, Zebedee Zeeker World’s Best Zookeeper, to life.
Zebedee Zeeker World’s Best Zookeeper is inspired by the real story of Mickey the chimpanzee who escaped from Liverpool’s Zoological Park in the 1930s. Andy has written a series of books all about Mickey and fictional zookeeper Zebedee. Although Andy’s own theatrical production of Zebedee Zeeker has been performed various times at local literary events, the collaboration with Stagecoach Liverpool marked the very first time the book had the musical theatre treatment.
40 Early Stages students performed the musical show at St Edward’s College in West Derby. Principal Kirsty said, “I immediately saw the potential in Zebedee, with the story being based on local historical facts, which I knew our parents would love. I sat down with the teachers in each of our three Early Stages classes to work on our production and each class took charge of one of three chapters that make up the book. We are delighted with the final result, and I want to thank Andy and all our parents for supporting the show.
‘A key principle of what we do at Stagecoach is creating opportunities for children to promote their confidence, social and communication skills to express themselves and find friendships through performing arts – including singing, dancing and drama. To have material to work with like Zebedee Zeeker is a dream!”
Andy, whose son Dylan attends Stagecoach Liverpool and featured in the production, said, “When I wrote Zebedee Zeeker, I thought it would translate well to the stage, but I am blown away with what the Stagecoach team has achieved. They used my rhymes and stayed faithful to the Zebedee characters, but I must give full credit to Kirsty and her colleagues who came up with their own original songs and dances. This is a true Merseyside collaboration, and great for the city’s theatre scene!”
Well done to everyone at Stagecoach Liverpool, we’re very proud of you all. Visit Stagecoach Liverpool’s site
to find out more about the school and discover Andy’s books for yourself on his website