The Tin Drum

"Riotous and colourful and immensely fun" ★★★★★ What's On Stage

"This is glorious, anarchic storytelling" ★★★★★ The Stage

"Wistful melancholy and stamping heartiness" ★★★★★ The Observer


Kneehigh with Liverpool Everyman & Playhouse and West Yorkshire Playhouse present

The Tin Drum

Based on the novel by Günter Grass

Written by Carl Grose
Music by Charles Hazlewood
Directed by Mike Shepherd


"I am light! I am life!
I gotta brain like a bomb and a tongue like a knife!
I am wrath! I am rage!
I gotta fully-formed mind for a kid of my age!"


On Oskar's third birthday, he rails against the adult world and decides to remain a child forever. Armed with a heart full of rage, a singing voice that shatters glass, and a seemingly indestructible tin drum, Oskar sets about to reveal the world for what it truly is. 

However, the world has other plans for our hero...

The tide is turning. People are taking sides. And the shadow of the Black Witch draws ever closer.

Often hailed as one of the greatest novels ever written, Günter Grass' surreal post-war masterpiece has never been more prescient. Kneehigh will retell this extraordinary story of love, war and fizz powder as startling musical satire: part Baroque opera, part psychedelic white-out, part epic poem. A burlesque, a blitzkreig, a tidal wave about to break. 

Written by Carl Grose, composed by Charles Hazlewood and directed by Mike Shepherd - the team that brought you the internationally acclaimed Dead Dog in a Suitcase (and other love songs), The Tin Drum is a folktale for troubled times: one political, profane and profound. 

Prepare the dance to the beat of a different drum!

Suitable for ages 14+


This summer writer Anna Maria Murphy and singer/composer Dom Coyote are taking the Kneehigh Rambles to Leeds and Liverpool, collecting stories and memories from people they meet along the way. Follow their progress and stories on The Tin Drum Rambles blog

Related News


The Times

The Times

"This is a wild show: crazed, careening, cacophonous. And it’s terrific" ★★★★

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Good News Liverpool

Good News Liverpool

"This is an energetic, engaging and thought-provoking piece that received a thoroughly deserved standing ovation and maintains Kneehigh’s reputation for world-class theatre" ★★★★

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Writer   Carl Grose
Music   Charles Hazlewood
Director   Mike Shepherd
Designer   Naomi Dawson
Lighting Designer   Malcolm Rippeth
Puppet Director   Sarah Wright
Choreographer   Etta Murfitt
Sound Designer   Ian Davies
Company   Nandi Bhebhe, Les Bubb, Dom Coyote, Damon Daunno, Rina Fatania, Ross Hughes, Angela Hardie, Bettrys Jones, Patrycja Kujawska, Alex Lupo, Beverly Rudd, Ruth Wall, Sarah Wright

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