What Happened to You?

Nikki Charlesworth

Family, Puppetry, Theatre

Read an interview with creator Nikki Charlesworth on integrating access into the performance.

What Happened to You? follows three raggedy puppets, who like their puppeteers, are just trying to get through the day. Ahead of them lies a mountain of challenges and they are forced to find creative ways to overcome their impassable surroundings. 

This show explores our preconceptions about disability in a playful and humorous way, that is enjoyable for the whole family.


About What Happened to You?

What Happened to You? is a family production, featuring award-winning puppets. Designer Nikki Charlesworth challenges the fundamental laws of traditional puppetry creating puppets that move as she moves. 

Follow Little Red, Noodles and Bo, three raggedy puppets, trying to get through the day. Ahead of them lies a mountain of challenges. They persevere, finding creative ways to overcome their impassable surroundings, confronting the prejudices disabled children face. This show highlights the importance of access and inclusion and promotes the endless opportunities once barriers are removed. 

What Happened to You? features creative use of Audio Description, embedded into an original score and is BSL translated throughout.

About Nikki Charlesworth

Nikki Charlesworth is a Theatre Designer, Puppeteer/Puppet Maker and recently turned Animator, from Nottingham.

In her professional life Nikki has worked at the forefront of disability-led theatre-making, contributing to new, ground-breaking work in the sector, and advocating for accessible puppetry training opportunities. Nikki has worked for pioneering disability-led companies such as Graeae Theatre Company, and Circus company Extraordinary Bodies and in 2021 was announced as one of the winners of the Evening Standard Future Theatre Fund, in association with TikTok.

Design credits: Self-designed and directed: What Happened to You? 2021 UK Tour and 2022 Canada Tour (Nikki Charlesworth Productions), The Steampunk Circus of Unkindness, 2022 Short Film and 2021 Regional Tour (Square Pegs Theatre Company), Splash! 2022 Short Film Animation and 2019 UK Tour (Extraordinary Bodies) and Maklena 2019 Ukraine Tour and 2018 UK Tour (Night Train Theatre Company). 


Creative / Production credits:

Director and Designer: Nikki Charlesworth



Nikki Charlesworth

Robyn Olivia

Bryony McCombie Smith

Georgia Jackson

Mia Ward

Hearns Sebuado


Company Stage Managers:

Patricia Davenport

Elizah Jackson

Dominic Murray


Design Team:

Nikki Charlesworth

Tony Mason

Bryony McCombie Smith


Composer and Sound Designer: Oliver Vibrans


Puppetry Mentor: Seam Myatt


Dramaturgy Mentor: Laura Guthrie


Audio Description Consultant: Chloe Clarke


Audio Describer: Jane Ensell


BSL Consultation and translation:

DL Williams

Mia Ward

Hearns Sebuado

BSL Creative Support

Becky Barry


The original 2018 research and development team consisted of:

Puppeteers: Nikki Charlesworth, Rachel Leggett and Bryony McCombie Smith

Creative Advisor: Daryl Beeton

Puppetry Advisor: Sean Myatt

Composer: Oliver Vibrans

Funding, commissioning and partner credits:

Polka Theatre – PolkaLAB residency recipient.

In Good Company – Artist support fund recipient.

The New Wolsey Theatre Ipswitch – Testing Ground commission recipient.

Cast Theatre, Docaster – Host of scratch performance.


What Happened to You? is supported by Without Walls, further partners to be announced.