Running Wild

Samuel Adamson
Date Published
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For Lilly and her mother, going to Indonesia isn’t just another holiday. It’s an escape and a new start. But when Will takes a gentle ride along the beach on an elephant called Oona, calamity strikes. As a tsunami comes crashing towards them, Oona charges deep into the jungle, her young rider desperately clinging on. Miles from civilisation, there’s wonder, discovery and treetop adventures among the orang-utans. But then as Lilly’s thoughts turn to his mother left behind on the beach, tigers prowl, hunger hits, and she must learn to survive the rainforest.

Samuel Adamson’s adaptation of Michael Morpurgo’s novel Running Wild was premiered by the Chichester Festival Youth Theatre in 2015. It received its professional premiere in May 2016, in a Regent’s Park Theatre and Chichester Festival Theatre co-production.

Running Wild was winner of Best Show for Children and Young People at the 2015 UK Theatre Awards.

Critic Reviews

This is a work as fierce as it is spectacular, a family thriller that leaves lots to chew over, and plenty to stick in the throat.

The Stage
Critic Reviews

Based upon a newspaper clipping Morpurgo read about a child who was taking an elephant ride when the wave hit and survived because the creature charged inland to higher ground. Morpurgo takes this extraordinary story and spins it into fantasy.

Critic Reviews

A brilliant spectacle.

Critic Reviews

Brings joy to the heart and a lump to the throat.


Samuel Adamson’s plays include: Wife (Kiln Theatre), Some Kind of Bliss (Trafalgar Studios), All About My Mother (from AlmodĂłvar; Old Vic), Fish and Company (Soho Theatre/National Youth Theatre), Southwark Fair (National Theatre), Drink, Dance, Laugh and Lie (Bush Theatre/Channel 4), Grace Note (Peter Hall Company/Old Vic), Clocks and Whistles (Bush Theatre), contributions to the 24 Hour Plays (Old Vic), A…

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