13 – 24 FEB 2019

Southbank Centre's Imagine Children's Festival returns in 2019 for 12 jam-packed days of fun.

Dive into the best children’s theatre, literature and music, with plenty of workshops and free events for everyone.

Draw, write, read, play, sing, dance and create with us. With over 50% of the programme free and loads to do for ages 0 – 12, we have your half term sorted.

 

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Find out first about our events and activities for families through our mailing list.

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all events

Free

Free

Various times
16 Feb 2019 - 24 Feb 2019
Various times | 16 Feb 2019 - 24 Feb 2019
Hop, jump and skip on our Riverside Terrace
Hop, jump and skip on our Riverside Terrace
Hands underneath a red light projector showing images of symbols
Various times
13 Feb 2019 - 2 Jun 2019
Various times | 13 Feb 2019 - 2 Jun 2019
Art
What if you could hear colour and feel sound? Come and play in giant sandpits, creating music and designs through movement
What if you could hear colour and feel sound? Come and play in giant sandpits, creating music and...
Giant Chalkboard at Southbank Centre

Free

Free

Various times
13 Feb 2019 - 24 Feb 2019
Various times | 13 Feb 2019 - 24 Feb 2019
What can you add to this enormous chalkboard drawing of outer space?
What can you add to this enormous chalkboard drawing of outer space?
Photo of the Time for Bed event at Southbank Centre's Imagine festival
Various times
13 Feb 2019 - 24 Feb 2019
Various times | 13 Feb 2019 - 24 Feb 2019
Enter a starlit world of lullabies, nursery rhymes, fairy tales and bedtime stories
Enter a starlit world of lullabies, nursery rhymes, fairy tales and bedtime stories
Illustration children dancing in the evening light and birds on buildings
Various times
13 Feb 2019 - 17 Feb 2019
Various times | 13 Feb 2019 - 17 Feb 2019
Introduce your little ones to theatre at an interactive hip-hop show
Introduce your little ones to theatre at an interactive hip-hop show
The Rig Play Zone

Free

Free

10:30 am
14 Feb 2019 - 14 Feb 2019
10:30 am | 14 Feb 2019 - 14 Feb 2019
Bang, jingle and explore your own sound-world on The Rig, a musical playground for all the family
Bang, jingle and explore your own sound-world on The Rig, a musical playground for all the family
Mothers and Babies at a Performance
11:00 am
14 Feb 2019 - 14 Feb 2019
11:00 am | 14 Feb 2019 - 14 Feb 2019
Performance & Dance
Comedy
Have grown-up giggles at an afternoon comedy club - and bring the baby along
Have grown-up giggles at an afternoon comedy club - and bring the baby along
Unavailable
Photo of the children's singer-songwriter Al Start playing guitar

Free

Free

Various times
15 Feb 2019 - 15 Feb 2019
Various times | 15 Feb 2019 - 15 Feb 2019
Sing about cakes, castles, gloop and slime, bears in wardrobes and aliens on your roof
Sing about cakes, castles, gloop and slime, bears in wardrobes and aliens on your roof
Peppa Pig and family performing on stage
Various times
15 Feb 2019 - 17 Feb 2019
Various times | 15 Feb 2019 - 17 Feb 2019
Classical music
Everyone’s favourite Pig family leads an interactive introduction to live orchestra for little ones
Everyone’s favourite Pig family leads an interactive introduction to live orchestra for little...
Performer and Children on stage

Free

Free

Various times
16 Feb 2019 - 24 Feb 2019
Various times | 16 Feb 2019 - 24 Feb 2019
Bring your little ones to start the day in a musical way
Bring your little ones to start the day in a musical way
A Girl with glitter Face Paint

Free

Free

Various times
16 Feb 2019 - 24 Feb 2019
Various times | 16 Feb 2019 - 24 Feb 2019
Add colour, magic and sparkle to your day with the Glitterbox face painters
Add colour, magic and sparkle to your day with the Glitterbox face painters
Cover of The Way Past Winter by Kiran Millwood Hargrave
11:00 am
16 Feb 2019 - 16 Feb 2019
11:00 am | 16 Feb 2019 - 16 Feb 2019
Literature
Spoken word & Live literature
Cross frozen wild-lands with Mila and her sisters at a reading from author Kiran Millwood Hargrave
Cross frozen wild-lands with Mila and her sisters at a reading from author Kiran Millwood Hargrave
Malorie Blackman, writer
11:00 am
16 Feb 2019 - 16 Feb 2019
11:00 am | 16 Feb 2019 - 16 Feb 2019
Literature
Spoken word & Live literature
Hear the stories behind the incredible authors who ignite children's imaginations
Hear the stories behind the incredible authors who ignite children's imaginations

Free

Free

11:15 am
16 Feb 2019 - 16 Feb 2019
11:15 am | 16 Feb 2019 - 16 Feb 2019
Throw down some shapes and perfect your best moves in this hip-hop dance workshop for kids
Throw down some shapes and perfect your best moves in this hip-hop dance workshop for kids

Free

Free

1:00 pm
16 Feb 2019 - 16 Feb 2019
1:00 pm | 16 Feb 2019 - 16 Feb 2019
Get partying with child-friendly hip-hop, funk and disco anthems
Get partying with child-friendly hip-hop, funk and disco anthems
Nadine Kaadan, Illustrator
Various times
16 Feb 2019 - 16 Feb 2019
Various times | 16 Feb 2019 - 16 Feb 2019
Hear about a courageous little boy growing up in a time of conflict from the children’s author
Hear about a courageous little boy growing up in a time of conflict from the children’s author
The Skies Above My Eyes, Illustration of a young girl
2:00 pm
16 Feb 2019 - 16 Feb 2019
2:00 pm | 16 Feb 2019 - 16 Feb 2019
Voyage to the stars at a storytelling and drawing session with Charlotte Guillain and Yuval Zommer
Voyage to the stars at a storytelling and drawing session with Charlotte Guillain and Yuval Zommer
The Singing Mermaid, drawing of  a mermaid
Various times
16 Feb 2019 - 20 Feb 2019
Various times | 16 Feb 2019 - 20 Feb 2019
Performance & Dance
Theatre
Escape to the seaside with The Singing Mermaid, told through song, puppetry and performance
Escape to the seaside with The Singing Mermaid, told through song, puppetry and performance
Ready Steady Lift Off astronaut programme
Various times
16 Feb 2019 - 16 Feb 2019
Various times | 16 Feb 2019 - 16 Feb 2019
Welcome to our space station: train to be an astronaut, make your own rocket and lift off!
Welcome to our space station: train to be an astronaut, make your own rocket and lift off!
Unavailable
THE GIANT STORYTELLING BED at Imagine Children's Festival Credit Victor Frankowski 2016

Free

Free

Various times
16 Feb 2019 - 24 Feb 2019
Various times | 16 Feb 2019 - 24 Feb 2019
Bring the whole family to unwind with a story every afternoon of Imagine Children's Festival
Bring the whole family to unwind with a story every afternoon of Imagine Children's Festival
Photo portrait of the author Philip Ardagh, who appears at Southbank Centre's Imagine festival
11:00 am
17 Feb 2019 - 17 Feb 2019
11:00 am | 17 Feb 2019 - 17 Feb 2019
Literature
Spoken word & Live literature
Join Kitty Cask for deeds of derring-do at an interactive storytelling session for ages 7 - 10
Join Kitty Cask for deeds of derring-do at an interactive storytelling session for ages 7 - 10

Free

Free

11:00 am
17 Feb 2019 - 17 Feb 2019
11:00 am | 17 Feb 2019 - 17 Feb 2019
Orchestra
Classical music
Get in tune at a day of music-making with the talented young musicians
Get in tune at a day of music-making with the talented young musicians
Child in audience
1:00 pm
17 Feb 2019 - 17 Feb 2019
1:00 pm | 17 Feb 2019 - 17 Feb 2019
You’ve heard about heroes and read about the greats, but how do you actually get there yourself?
You’ve heard about heroes and read about the greats, but how do you actually get there yourself?
Alex Milway in costumes
2:00 pm
17 Feb 2019 - 17 Feb 2019
2:00 pm | 17 Feb 2019 - 17 Feb 2019
Check in at the funniest and sunniest hotel in town for musical sing-alongs and live illustration
Check in at the funniest and sunniest hotel in town for musical sing-alongs and live illustration
Child enjoying Rug Rhymes at Southbank Centre

Free

Free

10:30 am
18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
10:30 am | 18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
Literature
Poetry
A short session of nursery rhymes, poems and stories for under-5s and their carers
A short session of nursery rhymes, poems and stories for under-5s and their carers

Free

Free

11:00 am
18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
11:00 am | 18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
Performance & Dance
Theatre
Jazz hands at the ready – join us for a day celebrating all things musical theatre, for ages 5+
Jazz hands at the ready – join us for a day celebrating all things musical theatre, for ages 5+
Photo of the illustrator David McKee sitting at a table drawing
11:00 am
18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
11:00 am | 18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
Literature
Spoken word & Live literature
It’s Elmer’s birthday! Celebrate 30 years of the patchwork elephant at a talk by his creator
It’s Elmer’s birthday! Celebrate 30 years of the patchwork elephant at a talk by his creator
Photo of a girl holding up a drawing she has done at a Southbank Centre poetry workshop
11:30 am
18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
11:30 am | 18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
Literature
Poetry
Create cosmic illustrations that take poems to a different dimension at a children’s workshop with Ed Boxall
Create cosmic illustrations that take poems to a different dimension at a children’s workshop with...
Unavailable
Photo of a performer surrounded by small children as part of the show Far, Far Away
Various times
18 Feb 2019 - 19 Feb 2019
Various times | 18 Feb 2019 - 19 Feb 2019
Under-5s encounter the playful genius of Schumann and the exploits of Pepper the monkey
Under-5s encounter the playful genius of Schumann and the exploits of Pepper the monkey
Various times
18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
Various times | 18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
Feel the wonder of books at a storytelling session for blind and partially sighted children
Feel the wonder of books at a storytelling session for blind and partially sighted children
Illustration of a dog for the Woof Woof Wag Wag Puppy Poems event at Southbank Centre's Imagine festival
1:30 pm
18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
1:30 pm | 18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
Literature
Poetry
Pad along to hear poems about our waggiest friends at this poetry reading for ages 5 - 7
Pad along to hear poems about our waggiest friends at this poetry reading for ages 5 - 7
We're Going on a Bear Hunt
2:00 pm
18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
2:00 pm | 18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
Classical music
Orchestra
Go on an intrepid adventure at a screening of the animated film adaptation of the children's book
Go on an intrepid adventure at a screening of the animated film adaptation of the children's...
Photo of an audience of children and adults at the National Poetry Library at Southbank Centre
3:00 pm
18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
3:00 pm | 18 Feb 2019 - 18 Feb 2019
Literature
Poetry
In the mood for some powerfully persuasive poetry? Pile in to a poetry reading for ages 8 - 11
In the mood for some powerfully persuasive poetry? Pile in to a poetry reading for ages 8 - 11
Cosmic Currents with Figs in Wigs and Friends

Free

Free

11:00 am
19 Feb 2019 - 19 Feb 2019
11:00 am | 19 Feb 2019 - 19 Feb 2019
Put on your space suit for a day of intergalactic workshops, dance, performance and storytelling
Put on your space suit for a day of intergalactic workshops, dance, performance and storytelling
Jeremy Strong, writer
1:00 pm
19 Feb 2019 - 19 Feb 2019
1:00 pm | 19 Feb 2019 - 19 Feb 2019
Literature
Spoken word & Live literature
Laugh your socks off with Jeremy Strong as he shares the giggles from his latest children's story
Laugh your socks off with Jeremy Strong as he shares the giggles from his latest children's...
A toddler holding up a children book
Various times
19 Feb 2019 - 19 Feb 2019
Various times | 19 Feb 2019 - 19 Feb 2019
Dive under the sea with writer Candy Gourlay in a children's show about the mysterious dugong
Dive under the sea with writer Candy Gourlay in a children's show about the mysterious dugong
Captain Flinn:The Magic Cutlass
Various times
19 Feb 2019 - 23 Feb 2019
Various times | 19 Feb 2019 - 23 Feb 2019
Performance & Dance
All aboard for a theatrical pirate adventure with live music, puppetry and dastardly dinosaurs
All aboard for a theatrical pirate adventure with live music, puppetry and dastardly dinosaurs
book cover for The Day I Fell into a Book
Various times
19 Feb 2019 - 23 Feb 2019
Various times | 19 Feb 2019 - 23 Feb 2019
Performance & Dance
Theatre
Find yourself in a magical world of imagination at an immersive storytelling adventure
Find yourself in a magical world of imagination at an immersive storytelling adventure
Heart N Soul, creative arts company

Free

Free

11:30 am
20 Feb 2019 - 20 Feb 2019
11:30 am | 20 Feb 2019 - 20 Feb 2019
Get involved in a creative project for children and young people with learning disabilities
Get involved in a creative project for children and young people with learning disabilities
Illustration for the event This is the Drum, showing children in bright clothes dancing in the sand while a boy plays a kettle drum
Various times
20 Feb 2019 - 20 Feb 2019
Various times | 20 Feb 2019 - 20 Feb 2019
Come and step to the beat with the award-winning picture book author
Come and step to the beat with the award-winning picture book author

Pages

all stories

The eighth episode of our regular podcast looks at the lack of diversity in children’s literature
Get a flavour of this year’s jam-packed programme
Discover the performances that will get you giggling at our brilliant children's festival
Children's television presenter Lauren Layfield on what you ought to know about being a girl today
Watch the trailer for Michael Morpurgo's Why The Whales Came
Are the Nordic countries the best places to bring up healthy, happy children?
John Hegley reads his favourite childhood poem, Tarantella by Hilaire Belloc
Laura Dockrill, reads her favourite childhood poem Roald Dahl's The Pig
Cargoes by John Masefield read by Francesca Beard
The children from Imagine Children's Festival interviewed Wayne Hemingway about housing
For Imagine Children's Festival 2013 the kids are taking over!
The children at Imagine Festival interview writer Frank Cottrell Boyce
Michael Rosen talks about the importance of funny books for kids

don't miss

16 Feb
Literature
Spoken word & Live literature
Hear the stories behind the incredible authors who ignite children's imaginations
18 Feb
Classical music
Orchestra
Go on an intrepid adventure at a screening of the animated film adaptation of the children's book
see all events

discover Imagine

story
Get a flavour of this year’s jam-packed programme
podcast
The eighth episode of our regular podcast looks at the lack of diversity in children’s literature

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Avocado Smash

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