18 June 2021 Share
Macmillan Children’s Books and Mr Dilly Presents have launched a newly created online show based on Alice in Wonderland for schools and families.
Celebrating 150 years since Macmillan first released Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There, this new 30 minute film is part of Mr Dilly’s educational online offering to schools and will be available to watch as a pay per view, or as part of a Mr Dilly school subscription, from 14th June 2021. The show is available at: www.mrdilly.com/mrdillysaliceinwonderland. A special family offer is planned to mark Alice Day on Sunday 4th July.
Mr Dilly’s Alice in Wonderland showcases many of the well-loved and classic characters who appear in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There; from The Cheshire Cat, to Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee, to the Hatter at his tea party and the White Rabbit. Mr Dilly leads the narrative way as the White Knight, guiding the audience through the story as though they are Alice; curiously observing and experiencing Wonderland for the first time.
A selection of Tenniel’s illustrations feature throughout the show, including his original black and white images, as well as those coloured by Harry G. Theaker (1911) and Diz Wallis (1995) and the costumes are also inspired by this classic look. The copyright for the coloured images of Alice in Wonderland are owned by Macmillan.
Mr Dilly writes and performs shows on a range of historical subjects and re-imaginings of classic tales, presenting them with a unique blend of entertainment, education and improvisation. A familiar face in schools and at literary festivals, he has so far enriched the learning of over 95,000 children. During the pandemic, his shows transitioned to include an online offering, each one written, performed, filmed and directed by Mr Dilly.
Alyx Price, Associate Publisher, Macmillan Children’s Books says: “We have been looking for the right partner to help us reach children and families with an accessible introduction to The Macmillan Alice that remains true to both the original characters and the history of the two well-loved classic stories. By working with Mr Dilly, we have been able to do this and to develop an online show that has the great potential to reach a new young audience not only in the UK but around the world. Mr Dilly brings a fresh view and a fun, infectious energy to Wonderland and we couldn’t be more pleased to be working with him in this anniversary year.”
Mr Dilly says: “It’s a huge honour to be partnering with Macmillan Children’s Books on the Alice in Wonderland novels and celebrating the 150th anniversary of Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There. These classic books capture the wonder, imagination and unique characters that can be found throughout the world of stories. Sharing the magic of Alice in Wonderland with a new generation of readers is hugely exciting and I could not have asked for more brilliant stories on which to base one of my shows. I am delighted to be bringing this new online show to schools and families across the UK and beyond.”
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland was published by Macmillan Publishers in 1865 and Lewis Carroll completed his sequel in 1868, but his determination to have John Tenniel continue as the illustrator for Alice saw a wait of three years. Carroll was keen for the book to publish for Easter 1871, but the illustrations were not ready, so all the focus moved to Christmas. Despite fears that the book would be delayed again until 1872, everyone was delighted when the bookshops received their copies on 11th December 1871, just in time for festive gifting. The intention was to publish 6,000 copies, but to fulfil the orders 9,000 were printed initially. 32,000 copies were printed in the first year of publication.