Award-winning Book The Bear and the Piano by David Litchfield Narrated by Joanna Lumley in New Orchestral Production . . .

B&PAward-winning book The Bear and the Piano by David Litchfield narrated by Joanna Lumley in new orchestral production with animated film.


On 16th June tickets went on sale at venues across the country for Carrot Productions’ presentation of the iconic film The Snowman accompanied by a live orchestra. Brand new to the programme this year, alongside The Snowman, is an exclusive animated film of the award-winning book The Bear and the Piano by David Litchfield and narrated by Joanna Lumley, showing this December.

This beautifully illustrated tale of music, friendship and adventure is brought to the big screen in a specially commissioned version by Carrot Productions which captures the essence of the original story. With music by Daniel Whibley played live by a professional orchestra, and a narration recorded by superstar Joanna Lumley, this entrancing creation looks set to become a family favourite for the next generation.

Author-illustrator David Litchfield, represented by The Bright Agency, said: “I can’t wait to see my book animated on the big screen, accompanied by such brilliant live music, and of course the unmistakable voice of Joanna Lumley reading along.”

Speaking about her involvement, Joanna Lumley said: “In the tradition of Peter and the Wolf and The Snowman, The Bear and the Piano is an enchanting story told with glorious music and is a bewitching treat for all ages. I am 109 and read the tale aloud and felt as though I were seven again. Delicious!”

The Bear and the Piano won the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize for Best Illustrated Book in 2016. Commissioning Editor at publisher Frances Lincoln Children’s Books, Katie Cotton commented “I’m so excited that Bear will be taking to the stage this Christmas, for the next stage in what has already been an incredible journey. I’m sure he will continue to delight children across the country, and can’t wait to see him in action myself!”


For Dan Whibley writing the music has been a joy: “My inspiration came from the beautiful illustrations and heartwarming story: from the sounds and remoteness of the huge forest to the energy of the big city, and from the first tentative attempts playing the piano to the international superstar. I have interspersed my own music with a few well known piano pieces that I hope will bring the story to life.”

Rachel Whibley, Managing Director at Carrot Production, said: “We are so delighted to have The Bear and the Piano on tour with us. This is an orchestra drawn from some of the top musicians in the country, many of whom are members of such orchestras as The Hallé and the BBC Philharmonic. It is a brilliant opportunity to bring a picture to life, enhancing it with such stunning narration and musical accompaniment for children and parents alike. It’s been a joy working with David on the artwork for the animated film and we’re delighted to be partnering the bears story with a production of such a well-loved children’s classic as The Snowman.”

With a record breaking 46 performances at 15 venues across the Midlands and the North, this year Carrot productions are taking The Bear and the Piano to eight of these locations: Chester, Chesterfield, Derby, Oldham, Coventry, Blackpool, Hanley and Hull.

David Litchfield will be attending the performance in Chesterfield 7pm on December 5th, signing books during the interval for audience members. Full details can be found at:


joanna lumleyrankin           BEAR AND PIANO

 © Rankin 2017                          © David Litchfield Illustration

The Bookseller describes the forth-coming production as an entrancing film – read more here. The news has also been shared by Book Brunch here.

Further information:

  • For ticket information and further details of the tour, which runs from 1 to 30 December, please visit
  • Accolades: The Bear and the Piano by David Litchfield won the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize: for Best Illustrated Book 2016 / “One of the most distinctive and original picture book debuts.” The Bookseller / “A story of the joy of music and the importance of friends.” The Sunday Times
  • For more information about David Litchfield please contact his agent at The Bright Agency, Anne Moore Armstrong:
  • To request press tickets or for more information contact Rachel Whibley:; 01457 889366 / 07827 014878
    Or Marian Blaikley:; 0161 446 2225 / 07932 069862