The World-famous Halle Orchestra is set to present 6 concerts featuring David McKee’s Elmer the Elephant as the Halle Half-term Family Concerts Return.

Based on the book Elmer, by McKee, the concerts which are set to take place on 28 and 29 October at Halle St Peters and follow 2013’s There’s A Rumble In The Jungle and last year’s Giraffes Can’t Dance.

The interactive concerts feature nine Halle musicians acting, dancing and singing, telling the inspirational story of individuality and acceptance of the eponymous patchwork elephant. Tired of being laughed at, Elmer disguises his multi-coloured patchwork skin to fit in with the other elephants. But far from gaining acceptance, his plan backfires and he is only welcomed into the herd once his true colours are revealed.

The performance is a perfect 40 minute introduction to instruments of the orchestra, ideal for children aged 3-7 years. With a score specially written by the Hallé’s Education Director, Steve Pickett, this series of half-term concerts is back for the third year as part of the Family Arts Festival.

Elmer the Elephant has become a modern classic; its subtle message – that it’s ok to be different – resonates with children across the world. Celebrating its 25th anniversary last year, David McKee remembers the racist comment about his daughter that sparked the idea for the story. He said “my daughter was upset. I thought, he’s talking about my daughter. I couldn’t believe it. She is darker skinned because her mother was Anglo-Indian, but my daughter is beautiful – as was my wife.” Creating something positive and inspiring from an unpleasant experience, the resulting story became one of the bestselling children’s books of recent times.

Concerts take place at Halle St Peter’s, 40 Blossom Street, Manchester, M4 6BF
28 October – 10.00am; 11.30am; and 1.15pm
29 October – 10.00am; 11.30am; and 1.15pm
Tickets £6 adults, £4 children.
Tickets available from

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The Halle Orchestra.  Image credit to Russel Hart.