Audio Drama: The Girl of Ink and Stars

The Spark Arts for Children and Inspire:  Culture, Learning and Libraries 

The Girl of Ink and Stars Audio Drama

A play by Satinder Chohan, based on the book by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

Based on the award-winning book by Kiran Millwood Hargrave, The Girl of Ink and Stars tells the story of Isabella and Pablo’s journey in their search for a missing friend.

The play written by Satinder Chohan specifically to be performed in library spaces was produced by The Spark Arts for Children in association with Inspire, with funding from Arts Council England.  In the summer of 2019 the production toured 47 libraries with family audiences gripped by the tale of myths, maps and monsters.  You can find out more about those performances here.

In 2020, when the disruption caused by Covid-19 meant our libraries could not host theatre productions, we explored new ways of bringing exciting and imaginative stories to children and families.  Inspire, worked with The Spark Arts for Children, to bring writer Satinder’s words to life again. The Spark reunited the team who had so brilliantly created the original theatre production and transformed the play into an audio drama. 

From homes or classrooms, the audio drama, allowed children to be transported to the mythical Isle of Joya and be immersed in Isabella and Pablo’s journey.

The story

The Girl of Ink and Stars is a story of myth, magic and the power of friendship.

Forbidden to leave her island, Isabella dreams of the faraway lands her father once mapped. When a girl from the village disappears into the island's Forgotten Territories, Isabella and her lifelong friend Pablo go in search of her.  

Following her map and an ancient myth, Isabella discovers that deep beneath the dry rivers and smoky mountains, a fiery legend is stirring from its sleep... 

The audio drama

The Girl of Ink and Stars was presented over 3 audio podcasts and was available to listen from October 2020 to October 2021.

Act 1:  The Isle of Joya  
Act 2:  The Forgotten Territories
Act 3:  The Labyrinth  

The podcasts were recorded binaurally* which showcased the rich, immersive soundscape and created a 3D stereo sound environment. 

* Binaural recording is a method of recording sound that uses two microphones, arranged with the intent to create a 3-D stereo sound sensation for the listener of actually being in the room with the performers or instruments.

".. a thrilling and atmospheric audio experience based on an imaginative tale....a welcome escape to another world."

Sally Jack - British Theatre Guide 

The play script

The Cast and Creative Team

Director Adel Al-Salloum
Writer Satinder Chohan
Composer Craig Vear
Isabella Sally Ann Staunton
Pablo Reece Carter
Company Stage Manager Kate Bosomworth

Find out more about the cast and creative team here

About The Spark Arts for Children

The Spark Arts for Children exists to enable children to enjoy the opportunities for discovery offered by the arts as audiences, learners and as creators of their own art. The Spark has been working in partnership with Library Services since 2008, creating performance opportunities, participatory arts programmes and Artists in Residencies within local libraries. In addition, The Spark has developed bespoke commissions of professional performance work which toured to libraries across The East Midlands and beyond.

About the book

Kiran Millwood Hargrave is an award-winning poet, playwright, and bestselling author. Her debut The Girl of Ink and Stars won the overall Waterstones Children’s Book Prize 2017 and the British Book Award’s Children’s Book of the Year. It was shortlisted for numerous awards including the Jhalak Prize, the Branford Boase Award and the Little Rebels Prize.

The Girl of Ink and Stars is available to borrow both in libraries and online as an eBook and an eAudiobook.

For other fiction and non-fiction titles with similar themes to The Girl of Ink and Stars browse our booklist.