Terry Deary talks Horrible Histories

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Known the world over, author Terry Deary is a big hit with children, and their parents, for his Horrible Histories series of non-fiction books.

In fact, they became the world’s bestselling children’s history series with over 60 titles published and around 30 million copies sold worldwide, in 37 countries and 31 languages.

Now, the theatre shows, Groovy Greeks and Incredible Invaders, derived from his books are coming to the Millennium Forum in June.

And for the first time, audience members will hear the voice of Terry Deary himself.

He explained, “In Groovy Greeks I am the voice of Zeus

“This is the first time that I have interacted directly with the actors for the ‘Horrible Histories’ series

“It’s not something I have ever done before and I have acted on stage for over 40 years

“So it was a novelty and a different perspective that I never usually get to see as a career actor.”

Almost 15 years ago the Birmingham Stage Company bought the stage rights to ‘Horrible Histories’ and they’ve been on tour with the various shows ever since.

Terry said, “The fact that they are now shown around the world is bewildering!

“It’s a real thrill to have the books acted on stage. When the run at the West End started they asked me to do a six week run, but I live in Durham, which is 250 miles away from London, so it wasn’t possible. I simply have so many other things to do.

“However, this year is the tenth anniversary of the theatre shows and I am making a surprise guest appearance at one of the shows in the West End during the summer.”

Talking about the forthcoming shows in Derry he said, “The shows coming to Derry will have a 3D element, and audience members will wear polarising glasses, so things will seem to pop out of the stage at them.

“I don’t want to give too much away but it will be filled with excitement, yet it will not detract from the content.

“People who go to the shows, especially the parents, always seem amazed that they have had a terrific time, as well as learning something new.

“It’s a term I believe they call edu-tainment, where you can teach while the kids enjoy the activity.

“However, I would suggest that children younger than seven do not go along as it can be quite gruesome.

“I can’t stress that enough, even if you think your child is ‘mature for their age’, the show can be quite graphic in places.”

That said, Terry is “thrilled that the shows are travelling to Derry and hope that the children and their parents enjoy them”

Aside from the theatre shows, which Terry has little or no direct involvement with, the prolific author is not standing still. “I’m 69 years old and I have no intention of slowing down. Time is running out and I have so many other ideas for the future.”

For tickets, prices and show times see www.