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A nocturnal, site-specific promenade performance experience exploring the dark themes behind children's rhymes and stories, Nursery Crymes occupies the shadowy lanes and alleyways of urban environments or the pathways and forests of rural landscapes.


Conceived and led by Scotland's leading outdoor performance company, Mischief La-Bas, Nursery Crymes presents art work from some of the country's most exciting artists of different disciplines to create a series of encounters, installations and performances that probe the sinister side of nursery rhymes – the ideas of authority, morality and social indoctrination underpinning these simple tales.

From the depths of Mother Goose’s forest to the “fun” of the F***ed-Up Fairground, audiences are led down alleyways and behind police tape, through performer-animated spaces, soundscapes, film and art installations, and around some dark corners.

Immersive participatory environments designed and created by Angie Dight and Bill Breckenridge include The Good and Bad Forest, Cryme Alley and the Fu**ed-up Fairground.


Renowned live artist Liz Aggiss presents a new film and associated choreography for Nursery Crymes, chasing childhood into the corridors of crass with a sin-fuelled Cinderella.


Fiona Robertson, one of Glasgow’s leading visual artists explores the surreal, deeply-rooted imagery of nursery rhymes and the grotesque in the tactile on-site installation and film Bad Sheep.
AV artist Dav Bernard, known for his work with 85A, presents Alouette (High Voltage) an innovative live projection and soundscape manufactured by welding sparks that links the casual cruelty of children’s songs to the recurring use of torture in ‘civilised’ societies.
Glas(s) Performance and youth company Junction 25 present haunting sound piece good/bad/horrid.

Hastings-based Radiator Arts collective create immersive installation pieces within abandoned cars and shop windows.


Around all this, Mischief La-Bas performers take on the twisted forms of some beloved childhood characters, in dark and unexpected scenarios.


Nursery Crymes has been designed to be performed in a mixture of indoor/outdoor site-specific locations. The company are interested in exploring the possibilities of performing the work in spaces including urban lanes and alleyways, forests, old music halls, abandoned buildings, derelict sites and traditional festival settings.

Photo credits: Eoin Carey

★★★★★ The Scotsman

★★★★★ The Herald

★★★★ The List

"Clever, funny, thought-provoking - it would be criminal not to revive it soon." Mary Brennan

"This is a brilliantly conceived show that packs a huge and powerful civilisational punch, a devastating critique of the tolerance for cruelty and destruction that is often hidden in our adult language, but leaks out through those nursery tales; and although Nursery Crymes has gone for now, my guess is that this show will soon be back, in cities across the UK, and the world." Joyce McMillan

"Being taken down a dark alley may not be everyone's way of getting kicks of a Saturday night, but this promenade piece around the Trongate is a cheeky, subversive piece of work that's hard to categorise…Mischief La- Bas' promenade piece has a splendid pedigree…that brings out the inner hooligan in everyone, while making the audience reconsider the city's streets…" Lorna Irvine