In the Night Garden… – Wikipedia

This article is about the British children’s TV series. For the novel, see The Orphan’s Tales.

In the Night Garden… is a British live-action preschool children’s television series, aimed at children aged from one to six years old.[1] It is produced by Ragdoll Productions. Andrew Davenport created, wrote, and composed the title theme and incidental music for all 100 episodes.[2][3] It was produced by Davenport and Anne Wood, the team that also co-created Teletubbies. The programme is narrated by Derek Jacobi. It is filmed mostly in live action, and features a mix of actors in costume, puppetry and computer animation. The characters include Iggle Piggle, Upsy Daisy, Makka Pakka, the Tombliboos, the Pontipines, the Wottingers, the Haahoos, the Ninky Nonk, the Pinky Ponk, and the Ball.

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The first episode was first broadcast on 19 March 2007. Two series were made, with 100 episodes in all. The BBC confirmed in 2010 that it would not be commissioning another series.[4] The show’s budget was £14.5 million.[5] The programme’s creators have said that it is designed to relax and entertain its intended audience ages one to seven years old.[5]

Overview[edit]

The programme features a large cast of colourful characters with unusual names who live in a magical forest scattered with large daisies and brightly coloured pompom flowers. The characters mostly speak short and repetitive phrases and each has their own special song and dance. The garden is a sunny and colourful environment and the music is jaunty and music box-like. Producer Anne Wood said:

“We wanted to explore the difference between being asleep and being awake from a child’s point of view: the difference between closing your eyes and pretending to be asleep and closing your eyes and sleeping.”[6]

Each episode starts with a shot of a night sky with the stars appearing, followed by a shot of a child in bed, while the narrator introduces the programme’s episode. The scene then cuts to Igglepiggle, in his boat, getting ready to go travelling to the Night Garden whilst the theme music plays. The camera pans up to the night sky, followed by brightly coloured flowers. Then we see Igglepiggle going to the gazebo to meet his friends. After that, the title appears on or under a hedge and either the Ninky Nonk or the Pinky Ponk appears.

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The episodes end with the Tittifers singing their song (they also sing in between segments), then one character gets ready to go to sleep while they hear a bedtime story, which is generated by the magical gazebo that sits at the centre of the Night Garden. This story is a summary of the plot of the episode. Sometimes the characters all dance together under the Gazebo. Then we see all of the characters except for Igglepiggle going to sleep, while Igglepiggle delivers his goodbye sequence. Then the Night Garden turns and retreats into the night sky and Igglepiggle is seen asleep on his boat as the end credits roll.

In the Night Garden… is intended to help children relax and achieve calming relationships with parents. Producer Anne Wood also states: “We became very aware of the anxiety surrounding the care of young children which manifested itself in all kind of directions; but the one big subject that came up again and again was bedtime. It’s the classical time for tension between children who want to stay up and parents who want them to go to bed. So this is a programme about calming things down whereas most children’s TV is about getting everything up.”[6]

In 2007[7] and 2008,[8] the show won the Children’s BAFTA for “Pre-school live action,” as well as being nominated in 2009.[9]

Episodes[edit]

Cast[edit]

  • Sir Derek Jacobi as Narrator
  • Nick Kellington as Iggle Piggle
  • Rebecca Hyland as Upsy Daisy
  • Justyn Towler as Makka Pakka
  • Andy Wareham as Tombliboo Unn
  • Isaac Blake (Series 1)/Holly Denoon (Series 2) as Tombliboo Ooo
  • Elisa Laghi as Tombliboo Eee

Broadcast[edit]

Until 29 March 2008, the show aired on the CBeebies channel every day, including weekends, at 6:25 PM in the “Bedtime Hour” slot, in addition to earlier daytime showings on BBC Two on weekdays.[10] From 29 March until 29 August 2008, In The Night Garden… was removed from its 6:25 PM “Bedtime Hour” slot, which resulted in a petition asking for the programme to be re-instated to its normal slot.[11] One parent petitioner was quoted by The Daily Telegraph commenting that “My four-year-old refused to believe it was bedtime because In the Night Garden… hadn’t been on and it was daylight outside.”[11]

The show returned to the daily “Bedtime Hour” slot at 6:20 pm as of 30 August 2008, and began showing the second series (beginning with “Slow Down Everybody”) on 1 September 2008.[12]

Awards and nominations[edit]

  • BAFTA Children’s Awards 2007
    • Awarded Best Children’s Live-Action Series[7]
    • The website for the programme was nominated for Best Interactive Site[7]
  • BAFTA Children’s Awards 2008
    • Awarded Best Pre-School Live Action Series[8]
  • BAFTA Children’s Awards 2009
    • Nominated for Best Pre-School Live Action[9]

Merchandising[edit]

In the Night Garden… books, DVDs, toys and Magazines have been marketed since 2007.

Books[edit]

In 2007, Ladybird Books published a full In the Night Garden range of books, some had lift the flap features (The Prettiest Flower, 2007) and some had sounds from the programme (What a Funny Pinky Ponk!, 2009), these usually retailed for £8.99 when they were released from BBC Books/Ragdoll Productions.

In 2014, Penwizard[13] introduced a line of personalised books where customers can customise the story to include their child’s name and likeness in the story alongside Igglepiggle and friends.

DVDs[edit]

Several Region 2 DVDs have been released in the UK by the BBC since October 2007:

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DVD Title Episodes
Who’s Here? Makka Pakka Washes Faces

Tombliboos Waving Game

Makka Pakka’s Trumpet Makes a Funny Noise

Everybody all aboard the Ninky Nonk

The Prettiest Flower
Hello Igglepiggle! Igglepiggle’s Blanket in Makka Pakka’s Ditch

Jumping for Everybody

Igglepiggle’s Mucky Patch

The Pinky Ponk Adventure

Igglepiggle’s Blanket Walks About by Itself
Hello Upsy Daisy! Quiet Please Tombliboos!! Upsy Daisy Wants to Sing!!

Upsy Daisy Kisses Everything!

Upsy Daisy’s Big Loud Sing Song!

Igglepiggle Looks for Upsy Daisy and Follows her Bed!

The Ninky Nonk Wants a Kiss!
Hello Makka Pakka! Makka Pakka’s Stone Concert

Runaway Og-Pog

Makka Pakka’s Present

Makka Pakka Gets Lost

Washing the Haahoos
Hello Tombliboos! Too Loud Tombliboos!! Nice and Quiet!!

The Tombliboos’ Busy Day

Tombliboo Trousers!

Tombliboo Ooo Drinks Everybody Else’s Pinky Ponk Juice!

The Tombliboos Tower of Five
Isn’t That a Pip? The Pontipine Children on the Roof

Looking for Each Other

Slow Down Everybody!

Igglepiggle Goes Visiting

Where is the Pinky Ponk Going?
Look at That! Igglepiggle’s Tiddle

Makka Pakka’s Piles of Three

Where Are the Wottingers?

Mr. Pontipine’s Moustache Flies Away

What loud Music, Tombliboos!
What Fun! Sneezing

Hide and Seek

Mind the Haahoos

The Pontipines Find Igglepiggle’s Blanket

Upsy Daisy Dances with the Pinky Ponk
All Together! Waving from the Ninky Nonk

Playing Hiding with Makka Pakka

Wake Up Ball

Over and Under

Sad and Happy Tombliboos!
Best Friends! Upsy Daisy’s Tiring Walk

Trubliphone Fun

Shshsh! Upsy Daisy’s Having a Rest!

Who’s Next on the Pinky Ponk?

Makka Pakka’s Circle of Friends
All Aboard Ninky Nonk or Pinky Ponk

Upsy Daisy’s Special Stone

Ninky Nonk Dinner Swap

The Tombliboos Swap Trousers

Igglepiggle’s Accident.
Out for a Walk Upsy Daisy’s Funny Bed

The Ball

Wave to the Wottingers

The Pontipines in Upsy Daisy’s Bed

Igglepiggle’s Noisy Noises.
What Lovely Music Tombliboo Eee Gets Lost

Make Up Your Mind Upsy Daisy!

Following

Upsy Daisy Dances with the Haahoos

Long Distance Ball Game
Wake Up Igglepiggle Wake Up Igglepiggle

Where Can Igglepiggle Have a Rest

Oh Look It’s the Wottingers

Dinner in the Ninky Nonk

The Tombliboos Clean Their Teeth.

Each DVD features five episodes.

A boxset, Hello Everybody!, has been released, containing “Hello Igglepiggle!”, “Hello Upsy Daisy!”, “Hello Makka Pakka!” and “Hello Tombliboos!” Each of these titles have episodes relating to the character on which the DVD is based.

Toys[edit]

The show’s producers, Ragdoll Productions, signed a deal to make the toy producer Hasbro a global partner before the show was first broadcast, and merchandise was first made available in July 2007. The range includes small Igglepiggle, Upsy Daisy and Makka Pakka stuffed toys and a small Ninky Nonk train with detachable carriages. Wheeled toy licensee MV Sports & Leisure Limited produced a range of scooters and trikes. Play-Doh made some dough that came packaged with an Igglepiggle-shaped cut-out.

In spring 2008, several new toys arrived, including roll-along characters, Talking Cuddly Makka Pakka, Ninky Nonk Pop-up tent and more. Hasbro won the 2008 “Best Licensed Toy or Game range” Licensing Award for their In The Night Garden… range.[14]

In January 2009, a spokesman for the BBC confirmed that they had asked Hasbro to change the skin colour of the Upsy Daisy doll following “a handful of complaints”. The doll was originally released with a noticeably lighter complexion than seen in the television series, as it was based on the animated version of Upsy Daisy.[15]

In 2010, more New Toys were released like the Igglepiggle and Upsy Daisy set that contained a copy of the Series 2 episode The Pontipines’ Picnic (2008) on DVD as well as an electronic Ninky Nonk (which made the actual sounds from the Show) and a Playmat that had the Bridge, the Tombliboo Bush (with The Tombliboos and their beds) The Gazebo and the Pinky Ponk.

Live theatrical show[edit]

In the Night Garden…Live! started a UK tour in July 2010. The show took place in an inflatable purpose-built show dome. The show premiered in Liverpool, and moved on to London, Glasgow and Birmingham. In the Night Garden Live has toured the UK every summer.[16][17]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

  • In the Night Garden… at BBC Online
  • In the Night Garden on Cbeebies
  • In the Night Garden official site
  • In the Night Garden… at IMDb

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