About us

Scratch Built productions is a multi award winning theatre company founded in 2006 with an aim of creating aesthetically stimulating shows for children and adults alike.

We strive to make theatre that is accessible to all regardless of social or economical status.

Using mask and puppetry Scratchbuilt productions combine great original story telling with exquisitely handcrafted design. They work with a variety of artists ranging from animators, musicians, comediennes, circus performers and balloon modellers!

Nick Ash Scratch Built’s cofounder is in high demand as a puppet and set builder.

Becky Kitter the Producer and associate director of Scratch Built productions also runs an international balloon company Balloonatic

The company are based at and supported by Proteus Theatre in Basingstoke .

Current shows

please email beckykitter@me.com to book

The Shed of Stories

The shed is a multipurpose performance space. 

Tales will be told at various intervals throughout the day.  Between story times the shed becomes a pop-up library where children and families can read together. 

Commissioned by Basingstoke and Deane council

Bonkers Balloon Show

Watch showreel here

The Bonkers Balloon Show is a completely off the wall, unique show filled with comedy, circus fun, music, magic and lots and lots of balloons. A simple balloon gets turned into an alien, a helicopter and scuba diver, audience members are transformed into balloon creatures in front of your very eyes!  

BALLOON SCIENCE SHOW

Watch showreel here

Balloons are fun, right? Well if balloons are fun then that must mean that science is fun!  Becky the Balloonatic loves balloons and she wants you to see just how much we can learn from them. 

Full of spills, thrills explosions and pops! The show is extremely interactive and can work just as well with a small group as it does with a large audience.  What is a prediction? How do we do an experiment? What do we mean by equipment? What is science?

The Women who won the war!

The show is based on the real lives of the Thornycroft girls who worked in the factory where they built tanks and bullets!

An interactive 25 min show about the munitions workers of the World Wars. Everyone is welcome to come and watch the girls make a life sized kit car which children can actually ride in. Commissioned by Basingstoke and Deane council

The Stylists

A fun and fabulous walkabout act.

Catch the look good, feel good, world of The Stylists, here today, cardi-gone tomorrow! They started off their careers peddling designer clothing. They were Dior to Dior salesman. Now they are working on their next new look!

When you’re not feeling right they will lift your spirits and make you feel better with a bit of hanger-management!

’Werk it’ on their catwalk or just enjoy their daily dose of fun. You can’t miss these colourful creatures. Darn knit all, they really are Fab.U.Lous! 

Past Shows

THE CHRISTMAS SWITCH 2022

Review from Basingtoke Gazette

This year we offered a free performance for families on low income or those in crisis, we are so pleased to be working in partnership with local children’s charities The Safe and Home Start

LETS GO ON HOLIDAY 2022

Review from Andover Advertiser

FAIRY SHOES 2021

Review Basinsgtoke Gazette

Review From little Ankle biters

Review from West Ends best friend

YOU NEED A HOLIDAY! 2021

YOUR CHRISTMAS NEEDS YOU! 2020

Basingstoke Gazette. Read the full review here.

A show created during the Lockdown Mentoring via zoom by Roman Stefanski.

For many local families the ScratchBuilt / Proteus in-house Christmas show has become a yearly tradition but by the end of the Summer last year, it became clear that with the ever-changing restrictions around the pandemic, no-one could really predict what might be happening in the weeks leading up to Christmas. However, this year it felt more important than ever to do something special to  ensure that we could still bring a bit of Christmas magic to our communities. Despite what many might view as potential barriers, we embraced the opportunity and challenge and vowed that CHRISTMAS WOULD NOT BE CANCELLED!

…The result was  two different versions of Your Christmas Needs You , a digital-only and an in-person version giving the audience  the power decide how they would like to experience the show.

The in-person experience: A magical and immersive live show, tailored for a household/ support bubble of up to 6. The performance is a unique show for one group bubble only in the enchanting space.  In addition, other family members can be zoomed into the show, so they can also experience the magic too!

A live online- only version of the show:  With all the elements of the in-person experience (fully live and bespoke), with some unique elements/ games that can be done from home. The performers will be interacting directly with their audience on the screen. Ideal for those who are shielding/ vulnerable and cannot attend in person.

The first tickets released sold out within 10 minutes (!) so the team pulled out all the stops to squeeze in extra dates and performances.

I WANT TO WIND BACK TIME SO I CAN WATCH IT AGAIN!

Phoebe, aged 6

By the time the performances Basingstoke was in the Tier 2 category, so the in-person events were able to go ahead, but as we had predicted, some families found out they had to self isolate just a day before they were due to attend, and were able to switch their booked performance to a digital performance and not miss out on the magic!

Becky Kitter of Scratchbuilt explains why the challenge of creating a show to work in a pandemic actually gave them more creative freedom in many ways:

“We as a company felt really proud to create a show that was COVID safe but managed to retain all the elements that make our shows special. We were able to bring back a little bit of Christmas magic to families who needed a break from the stress of the pandemic.

In fact, this year felt even more special in some ways, because the audience was limited to 6, with just one family/support bubble per show we were able to do things that would be impossible in normal times with 40+ people in the audience. The children could paint, we threw balls, we jumped through hoops and took family photos!”

Something families and the press definitely agreed with!

JUST BEEN TO SEE THIS WITH TWO VERY EXCITED GRANDCHILDREN, THEY ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT! THANK YOU FOR A MARVELOUS DIVERSION FROM ALL THE DEPRESSING NEWS! WELL WORTH EVERY PENNY.

Martin, via email

CONVERSATIONS WITH COLIN

A social media live series on FaceBook and Instagram during Covid 19 Lockdown

During the pandemic, Scratch Built were also commissioned by Proteus to create several other projects including the online strory-telling series Conversations With Colin, created for very young children to promote wellbeing and to help them understand and talk about this confusing time with their families.

CONVERSATIONS WITH COLIN – THE CURIOUS CREATURE FROM ANOTHER PLANET!

Colin is a small blue creature from another planet, curious about Earth and wanting to learn through stories; his best friend Becky, will try to explain why Earth is a little bit different now. Becky will need the help of the young audience to answer Colin’s curious questions and make him feel a little less anxious about going to school, where he will be the only blue creature in the class….

WHAT? An interactive live storytelling event with Colin and Becky, every Thursday for the next month.
WHO? Everyone is welcome but the event is specially designed to be an engaging event for 3-7-year-olds or those with additional needs and their families.
WHY? Conversations with Colin is a COVID-19 digital response project for younger children and their families. The event is designed for parents and children to watch together, helping younger children express any anxieties they might have about returning to nursery or school, about how their world may be different now and beginning those conversations with parents and siblings.

Proteus CEO and Artistic Director explains “At this incredibly difficult time, the ability for families split apart by the pandemic to experience a little magic together is vitally important. This innovative model enables a safe, fully live experience to be shared with Grandparents, friends and family across the world via the unique zoom link. This work is only made possible by the funding we receive from our local authority partners at Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council and Arts Council South West; without this we could not create this work or support the many artists we work with on a daily basis. In these dark times the arts can bring sorely needed light, community and a hand on the shoulder to people disconnected from their  family and friends. That is what Proteus exists to do.”

FATHER CHRISTMAS’S CHRISTMAS WORKSHOP 2019

Review from the British theatre Guide

Have you ever wondered how the elves have all the toys ready in time for Father Christmas’s Christmas Eve deliveries? Join our newly-recruited elf on their first day working in Father Christmas’s workshop as they learn the ropes and find out what this Christmas’s must-have toy will be!

ABSOLUTELY AMAZING, THREE GENERATIONS OF OUR FAMILY GOT CAUGHT UP IN THE MAGIC

Audience member, The Magical Christmas Toy Shop, Dec 2018

In this gently interactive show, audiences are taken on a journey around an enchanting walk-through adventure where children are actively encouraged to explore, play, create and interact with the charming characters that they meet along the way.

Featuring Scratch Built’s trademark mix of interactive storytelling, exquisitely hand-crafted set design and beautiful (and funny!) puppetry, music and sensory elements, all with a generous dusting of Christmas magic, this show is the perfect festive treat for both younger audiences and the young-at-heart!

Director and co-creator Becky Kitter from Scratch Built Productions says,
“We create this show for everyone to enjoy… don’t think that because this show is for babies and toddlers alike that it is in any way less engaging for adults! Through every meticulous detail, this immersive show has the same high standard of production values you’d expect from any professional show. The youngest members of the family are often overlooked or not considered in traditional theatre. Young children may not sit still and be quiet, but then why should they? We actively encourage them to explore, play and interact and it’s long been proven that in their early year’s children, learn most effectively through play and by observing the world around them. If we can make that world a magical place filled with wonder, then we consider it a job well done!”

This year, Scratch Built will be working with Tim Webb, MBE, who has been recognised for his commitment to creating theatre for very young children as well as children and young people with profound and multiple learning disabilities and those with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder. Previous productions have had specialist input from baby-signing experts and Autism Hampshire.
Relaxed performances take place on Monday 16th December at 11am, 2.30pm and 4.30pm.

 IT IS ALWAYS OUR FAVOURITE THING TO DO AT CHRISTMAS AND A GREAT INTRODUCTION TO THEATRE FOR THE CHILDREN

Audience Member How many sleeps till Christmas

Father Christmas’s Christmas Workshop is funded by The Arts Council and supported by Proteus Theatre Company.

Hansel and Gretel rural tour 2018

Scratch Built Productions in association with Proteus Theatre Company invites you to step inside a fairytale world for a magical journey into the woods…

Featuring magical puppets by award-winning puppeteer Nick Ash and toe-tapping folk songs written by Arran Glass from folk band Apple of my eye,

The Magical Christmas Toyshop 2018

Review in Basingstoke Gazette

Come and explore the Magical Christmas Toy Shop – a marvellous emporium full of extraordinary, one-of-a-kind toys!

Enjoy Scratch Built’s trademark mix of interactive storytelling, puppetry, music and sensory elements, all with a generous dusting of festive magic! Created specifically to be enjoyed by the youngest members of the family, and as something a little different from a traditional Christmas show, the Creation Space will be transformed into an immersive walkthrough adventure where children are encouraged to explore, play, create and interact with the enchanting surroundings and colourful characters that they meet along the way.

Step inside this treasure trove of festive delights, and experience the wonder of Christmas through your little one’s
eyes as the magical toy shop comes to life! Who knows, you may even meet our most famous customer!

HOW MANY SLEEPS TILL CHRISTMAS ? 2017

The land between waking and sleep is a wonderful place where anything can happen, dreams become reality and reality becomes a dream.

Come and meet a colourful host of characters as they lead you on a magical journey where clouds are collected, stories are created, where wishes are welcomed and dreams can come true.

An interactive show with plenty of puppets and playfulness aimed at preschool children and their families. A wonderfully cozy Christmas treat.

How Do Reindeers fly? 2016

Except from Arts Council England

Review from NorthHants Mum

Have you ever looked up into the sky, and asked yourself the question; how do reindeer fly? Christmas Eve can be a bit daunting for a young reindeer about to make her first trip around the world. So many questions… What if I get lost? Will I get hungry on the way? What if I’m afraid of heights! Everything is ready. The presents are wrapped and Father Christmas’s cloak is back from the dry cleaners. There is just one problem for the young reindeer… how does she fly?

Santa Town 2015

Review from NorthHants Mums

All aboard the express train to Santa Town! This fully interactive show takes audiences on a magical journey through a winter wonderland and into a town like no other. You’ll meet a variety of festive characters and if you are very lucky you might meet the big man himself!

The Three Sillies 2015

co production with Arcola Theatre and Small Truth Theatre and winner of the Family Arts Award

Review from Little London

On instruction from the Mayor of Sillyton, you have been invited to come and experience a shindig to end all shindigs!

Created by the wonderful team that brought the acclaimed DREAM SPACE to Shakespeare’s Globe, THE THREE SILLIES is a wonderfully inventive, immersive and intoxicating theatre production (created specifically for families of all shapes, sizes and disguises).

THE THREE SILLIES brings an old English folk tale to vivid life, weaved amongst the REAL traditional gaming and food stalls – Maypoles, coconut shies, splat the rat and tin can alley contests, tea urns and delicious cake stalls.

Here you will regain the lost art of collective silliness, and rediscover your inner silly billy!

Father Christmas’ Christmas List 2014

Review from North HAants Mum

Come and meet Father Christmas and his elves, who are very busy getting everything ready. This fully interactive show takes you on a journey around Santa’s Grotto, introducing all the fun and festive characters that make Christmas Day possible and, if you’re very good, you will get to meet Father Christmas himself!

The perfect festive treat for younger audiences (and the young at heart), featuring music, puppets, dancing and lots and lots of participation.

The Dream Space 2012

Co Production with The Globe Theatre and Royal and Dearngate

Excerpt from the Oxford Mail

“This fun filled performance plunges into an exciting and magical world…what an amazingly, imaginative, intoxicating way to bring Shakespeare to life for children…totally mind blowing” – The Stage

Discover a world of wonder, magic and mayhem and help mischievous Puck and fabulous friends on their quest within The Midsummer Night’s DREAM SPACE.

These 60 minute immersive storytelling performances are told by a stellar cast of performers and puppets, directed by Dani Parr (Associate Director of the Royal & Derngate in Northampton), music soundscapes created by Grammy award winner Al Stone (Producer for artists such as Jamiroquai and Björk), puppets and designs created by our partners in the programme Scratchbuilt Productions and puppetry direction by Finn Caldwell (from Handspring “Warhorse” – and Blind Summit).

Expect the unexpected in a world filled with fabulous fairies, playful puppets and magical mayhem!

How to Be a Hero?

How to be a hero performed at the Basingstoke Oktoberfest

“Have no fear fair maidens! With courage in your heart, truth in your soul and luck on your side, you can do anything. I’m here to save you and not even a Razor-Backed Snapper can stop me!”

Knight Time

What would you do if you were face to face with a dragon?
Is jousting as painful as it looks? Just what is the best way to shine rusty armour? 

Join Jack as he finds out the hard way in this magical show.  Cheer Jack on as he competes in “The Knight Trials” and follow him on his adventures with his loyal horse Raspberry. There’s enough adventure for everyone and you might even get to see a dragon or two!

Comissions

Dragon

Sarah and Duck, Gorilla, Under the Rainbow,

Polka Theatre

Sneak Peak of the stage show and puppets byh Nick Ash
trailer for Polka theatre’s production of Gorilla
Trailer for Under the Rainbow

The Lost World, The adventures of Doctor Dolittle

Illyria Theatre

T-Rex designed and built by Nick Ash from Scratchbuilt Productions
All puppets made by Nick Ash

The big enormous present, Snowflake, Burglar Bill

The Pied Piper Theatre

Nick built set pieces for the Big Enormous Present
Snowflake. Burton Taylor Studio, Oxford Playhouse CREDIT Geraint Lewis
Nick made set and puppets for Burglar Bill

Makes and Hires

Please contact beckykitter@me.com for more information on hire

ASLAN/ GIANT LION

His Dark Materials full set of animals