The Most Gloriumptious Ways to Celebrate Roald Dahl’s 100th Birthday
Don’t get flushbunkled without plans to celebrate the author.
Tuesday is officially Roald Dahl Day, as the author, who died in 1990, would have turned 100 years old on Sept. 13, 2016. A series of events are planned throughout the month to honor one of the most beloved writers in children’s literature.
To celebrate the centenary, the city of Cardiff has unveiled a series of blue plaques to mark locations that influenced Dahl during the first nine years of his life. Later this week, the Welsh capital will transform into The City of the Unexpected. Organized by the Wales Millennium Centre and National Theatre Wales in association with The Roald Dahl Literary Estate, the two-day event will involve 6,000 performers and will mysteriously unfold at locations revealed throughout the day. The celebration will end with a Great Pyjama Picnic on Sunday.
Across the U.S., Wondercrump Weekend will be celebrated by dozens of venues hosting phizzwizzing parties, including the Brooklyn Public Library, Voodoo Doughnut in Austin, and Chicago’s Lincoln Park Zoo.
And through October 30, London theater companies Les Enfants Terribles and ebp are co-hosting Dinner at the Twits, a nightly theatrical dinner party for fans of Dahl’s short story. The stage musical adaptation of Matilda is still running concurrently in London and New York, and a musical production of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” is running on the West End, and aims for a Broadway run beginning in March 2017.
In addition to the locations throughout Cardiff, Dahl fans can also travel to sites that figured prominently in Dahl’s life and stories, as well as a few locations where film adaptations of his beloved novels were shot.
1. Great Missenden, U.K.
Visit the Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre in the Buckinghamshire village where Dahl lived and wrote for 36 years.
2. Cornwall, U.K.
Stay in the Victorian-era Headland Hotel on the shore in Newquay, where “The Witches” was filmed, and where the Grand High Witch presides over the annual meeting of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children.
Bavaria’s largest city is where much of the classic Hollywood film “Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” (1971) was shot. External shots of the chocolate factory were at the Stadtwerke München, which still exists, and the scene at the candy shop was filmed on Lilienstrasse.
4. Pasadena, California
The film adaptation of 1996’s “Matilda” was shot in and around Pasadena and nearby Arcadia. The Crank House in Altadena, California, was used as the location for Miss Trunchbull’s home, and was also featured in “Scream 2” and “Catch Me If You Can.”
Steven Spielberg’s 2016 animated adaption of “BFG” used landscape shots of the Orkney Islands, the Isle of Skye, and the Shiant Islands as the setting for the Giant’s Land.
Can’t make it to any of these far off lands? Pour yourself a fizzy lifting drink and set aside some time to re-read your favorite Dahl story. You can also download a DIY party kit from the Roald Dahl estate’s website.