The Owl Who Was Afraid of The Dark - A Shadow Play

The Clockwork Moth profile

Project by The Clockwork Moth


raised so far



Shadow puppeteers The Clockwork Moth are creating a magical new show of the much-loved children's book, 'The Owl Who Was Afraid of the Dark'

We're still collecting donations

On the 3rd January 2022 we'd raised £2,715 with 61 supporters in 49 days. But as every pound matters, we're continuing to collect donations from supporters.

New stretch target

With the extra money, we will:

-Strive to make our shows as accessible as possible to neurodiverse audiences by supporting our tour with as many subsidised 'relaxed performances' as possible.

-Ensure a fair wage for the huge amount of work all of our artists are putting into the project.

1634227102_80103439_3063511220345384_1157988294705807360_n.jpgThe Clockwork Moth are a Devon-based collaboration of artists, led by husband and wife Charlie and Victoria Narewski Scullion. We specialise in innovative shadow-puppetry shows for all ages, supported by live narration and live music. We have been making shadow works since 2006; previous works include Philip Pullman's 'Clockwork' (2010), The Brothers Grimm's 'The Devil with the Three Golden Hairs (2015) and 'Hansel and Gretel' (2018). After a 2-year hiatus, where our live theatre shows have simply not been viable due to the pandemic, we are back to mesmerise audiences old and young once more. We cannot wait! The book we have chosen to adapt was actually Charlie's favourite book as child, so it is a very special return to storytelling for us, not least because we have children of our own now. 'The Owl Who Was Afraid of the Dark,' by Jill Tomlinson is a deserving classic of children's literature, the story of a barn owl venturing into the world and learning to overcome his fear of the dark by learning about it from various people (and a black cat), who love the dark. It will be a celebration of the magic and wonder of nature and the seasons as well as the family dynamics of children and parents.

Below is a trailer from our 2015 show, made with our our current cast and crew.

We will perform this show with two puppeteers, two live musicians and a live narrator, touring from spring 2022. We have all worked together before on previous shows - its the absolute dream team!

(below) puppet scene from 'Hansel & Gretel' (2018)


We will be departing from our usual highly-detailed Victorian silhouette style and playing with creating shadow-puppets based on our own children's sketches. Tolly (8) and Gretel (5) are constantly drawing, and we have come to realise that their images contain a kind of truthful purity that an adult could only hope to attain in their inescapable obsession with 'perfection.' We are really excited to bring our childrens' drawing styles to life, telling deep and meaningful stories in shadow-puppet form.

By donating to our crowdfund you will help create the match funding that will support a larger funding applcation to the Arts Council National Lottery Project Grant, and by doing so, you can claim some of our super-duper rewards.

Our project costs include:

-Book rights and royalties

-Venue hire

-Subsidising 'relaxed performances' for neurodiverse audiences.

-Paying artists to make the puppets

-Paying artists and musicians to rehearse the show

-Artist fees for touring shows

-Puppet- and set-making materials.


-A new PA and wireless mic system

-Filming and editing the show for online viewing

-Printing costs, eg. advertising

-Creating crowdfund rewards and paying crowfund fees.

-Public liability insurance

The last couple of years have had good and bad sides, but the loss of collective live audience experiences has been a real loss. We sincerely hope that our project will be part of the revival of theatre, especially for the young audiences who have been so starved of public connectedness. Its a beautiful show and its perfectly placed to make audiences breath a sigh of relief that we can once again share these experiences.

We are trialling 'relaxed performances' alongside our standard shows in order to connect more effectively with neurodiverse audiences with different sensory needs. 

We greatly appreciate any donations - without your financial support, shows like this have to be achieved somehow alongside full-time jobs and parenting, and ultimately the quality suffers from that. Dedicated funds allow us to make the art our work and to put ourselves wholly into it. Many, many thanks for your kind donations! We hope you get the chance to see the finished show on stage or online!

"...twilight entertainment, a place of dim light and mysterious figures emerging from the night. I almost envy the very young children in the audience; this will be something to linger in their dreams, a sibilant whisper interrupting their future lives as adults. Whispering of magic in the dark."- Alexander Winfield, Animations Online (review of 'The Devil with the Three Golden Hairs', 2015)

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This project offered rewards

£30 or more

Buckfastleigh Limited Edition A3 Giclee Print

A beautiful limited edition giclee print on thick high quality paperstock. All orders made in our home-town Buckfastleigh by 12th November will reach the donor before Christmas, a perfect Xmas gift. Orders outside Buckfastleigh may arrive after Xmas. Unframed. UK delivery only.

£5 or more

A thank you in our programme!

Our show programme will feature a 'thank you' section, listing everyone who donated to our crowdfund.

£10 or more

Full Colour A4 Show Poster

A full colour poster for the show, plus a thank you in our programme. UK postage only.

£15 or more

A copy of 'How to Make A Shadow Puppet'

A signed copy of our home-made illustrated booklet, 'How to Make a Shadow Puppet,' which talks you through the materials and processes we use to create an original, durable shadow puppet. UK postage only.

£25 or more

Signed 'Hansel & Gretel' illustrated script-book

A beautiful signed full-colour book featuring all of the shadow puppet scenes from our show 'Hansel & Gretel' accompanied by the original script from the show. UK postage only.

£25 or more

Giclee Print artwork from the show

A beautiful limitd edition giclee print of 'The Owl who Was Afraid of The Dark' - A4 thick high-quality paperstock. UK postage only. Orders before 12 Nov will arrive before Xmas. Later orders may arrive after Xmas.

£100 or more

Original hand-cut silhouette artwork (A4)

A stunning hand-cut orginal artwork, with a subject of your choosing (optional, contact the [email protected] for request). International Postage accepted.

£150 or more

Original hand-cut silhouette artwork (A3)

A stunning hand-cut orginal artwork, with a subject of your choosing (optional, contact the [email protected] for request). International Postage accepted.

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