A BASINGSOKE theatre company is launching a project for young children and their families to help explain what is happening during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Conversations with Colin will be shown on Facebook Live by Proteus and Scratchbuilt Productions on May 28 at 10am, as a interactive event for children aged three to seven.

Colin is a small blue creature from another planet, who is curious about Earth and wants to learn through stories.

His best friend, Becky, tries to explain why Earth is a little bit different now, but needs the help of the audience to answer Colin’s questions and help him to feel less anxious about going to school, where he will be the only blue creature in the class.

The livestream events will continue every Thursday throughout the next month, encouraging viewers to interact with Colin and Becky.

The youngest members of Proteus Youth Theatre will be suggesting story ideas at the beginning, but the company hopes a wider audience will also offer suggestions in the coming weeks.

The project is designed for parents and children to watch together, helping younger children express any anxieties they might have about returning to school or nursery, about how their world may be different now, and beginning those conversations with parents and siblings.

Proteus artistic director, Mary Swan, said: “We have collaborated with Scratchbuilt over the past five years on creating high quality work for the under-fives in the shape of our popular in-house Christmas shows.

“We wanted to create something that would help families at the moment who might be struggling to explain the changing situation to younger children and those with commensurate learning disabilities.

“A conversation with Maria Miller MP on the national crisis in the arts, led on to a discussion about the effect the Covid-19 crisis is having on the mental health of younger children, and the idea began to take form.

“We will be launching other initiatives for young people over the next few weeks, led by our Youth Theatre members. We are a company that creates, and to not respond in a creative way to this crisis, particularly to the needs of younger people, seems unthinkable.”