ACTING for kids isn’t as easy as it looks, according to actor Anthony Pedley, who plays the BFG in a brand new production coming to Manchester Palace Theatre.

“You have to give children so much more than you do with adults,” said Chorley-born Anthony.

“You have to be honest and play it with integrity, children appreciate that. You really can’t get away with anything – in an adult show you might have two performances a day and think ‘I’ll save myself for the evening show’.

“But when you’re acting for children there’s no such thing as a Wednesday matinee in Wolverhampton, you have to give it everything you’ve got every time.

“For a lot of them this will be their first experience of live theatre so if you blow it you’ll lose them.”

When little orphan girl Sophie is snatched out of her bed in the dead of night by the BFG (big friendly giant), she fears the worst.

His grisly neighbours, the Bloodbottler and the Fleshlumpeater, like nothing more than ‘swalloping human beans, especially nice little childers’.

But the BFG is a dream-maker and not a man-eater and he’s about to take Sophie on a journey she never expected.

Anthony believes Dahl’s work is so well-loved because he was able to get into the mind-set of a child.

“I love Roald Dahl, and so do children,” said Anthony.

“He’s anarchic, and that’s what children love. He makes jokes against authority.

“Some of the parents have said they don’t like whizz popping scenes, but children love fart jokes, that’s what they find funny.

“All Roald Dahl’s stories are about empowering the child.

“Each child in the story gets the power – James and the Giant Peach, Matilda, and George’s Marvellous Medicine.

“Roald Dahl never forgot what it was like to be a child. He thought like a child, and that’s what’s so great about his work.”

In the first act of the play Sophie is played by a puppet in order to give the impression that Anthony is giant-sized.

But in the second half the actress who plays Sophie appears as her normal size, and Anthony wears a 16ft giant costume, which he operates from the inside.

“It’s a lovely show,” said Anthony.

“My favourite scene is the dream-catching. The actors on stage play their own instruments and it’s quite magical.”

l See Anthony Pedley in The BFG at Manchester Palace Theatre from Tuesday, August 25 to Saturday, August 29. For tickets call box office on 0844 847 2328. Visit the website below for more on Anthony.