Mr Gum and the Dancing Bear – the Musical!

Mr Gum and the Dancing Bear – the Musical!

National Theatre · 25 JUL - 31 AUG

Who likes bears? Everyone likes bears!

Lyn Gardner avatar
26 July 2019  ·  Follow on Stagedoor
“I really love Andy Stanton’s Mr Gum books for children. The revolting Mr Gum hates everything, particularly children. They are genuinely very funny and have a lovely anarchic streak that should transpose well to the stage in this musical version, with book & lyrics by Stanton and music from Jim Fortune. Mr Gum may hate fun of any sort – but family audiences should have plenty with this story of a bear who Polly and her friends must help escape from Mr Gum’s horrible clutches.”


Well, not quite everyone... Mr Gum is a complete horror who hates children, animals and fun of any kind – so when a big bear called Padlock strolls into town, trouble can’t be far off. Can nine-year-old Polly and her band of misfit friends help Padlock escape the villain’s evil clutches? Or will Mr Gum and his gruesome butcher sidekick prevail?

Based on the hilariously anarchic, award-winning children’s books, Mr Gum and the Dancing Bear – the Musical! promises to be an all-singing, all-dancing, occasionally-burping extravaganza for children and adults alike. Author Andy Stanton creates the book and lyrics, with music by Jim Fortune (Pericles).

Full of outlandish characters and joyful, utterly idiotic songs, this production is definitely not your average family fare.

Age Recommendation: 7+

Critic reviews

Bonkers, but in the best possible way


Andy Stanton adaptation delivers madcap characters, comic irreverence and flashes of real menace

The Arts Desk

An entertaining musical

Broadway World

This madcap musical adaptation of Andy Stanton’s children’s book is bear-illiant

The Stage

It’s impossible not to get caught up in the fun and silliness of this intelligent children’s play

A Younger Theatre

Andy Stanton’s adaptation of his own children’s books is packed with eccentricity and verbal flourishes – all at the expense of the story

The Guardian

A genuinely hilarious script

Musical Theatre Review

This gloriously weird and subversive musical will please adults and kids alike

Time Out

Date & time

Show ended
Thu 25 Jul - Sat 31 Aug, 2pm & 7pm


National Theatre
South Bank SE1 9PX London, UK · Get Directions
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