Delvene Pitt - She/Her
Delvene Pitt (Del Del) is a creative producer, editor and puppeteer, as well as being the founder of Little Crowns Storyhouse. Little Crowns Storyhouse is an award-winning children's education program for ages 0-7. Specialising in puppetry, they strive to enrich the minds of young children by teaching them about topics from all over the world. Little Crowns Storyhouse produces live educational events for toddlers as well as its digital shows online. Delvene has also developed an immersive infants school workshop called Culture Kids, which explores issues in society. Delvene has also written for Ladybird Books' Peppa Pig series and has worked with the BBC Children’s team and Disney.
Please tell us about your career
I fell in love with puppetry at age 14 when I was chosen to perform a puppet show to audience members at my local church. I must admit I had no idea what I was doing! However, the audience loved it. I took classes with an awesome company called One Way UK where I was taught key skills and the foundations of puppetry.
I started acting when I was in my 20s. It all started with a job as a runner serving teas and coffees for actors at a production company in Soho. But then, one day, they fired me because they said I was too 'happy' (but I think it's because they were trying to describe my ADHD). I met a lot of actors there and they inspired me to actually try it. I studied acting at the Stella Adler Studio in New York City. Whilst In NYC, I was chosen to work on behalf of the Student Outreach Team that held regular workshops in schools around New York. This experience led me to start making Puppets and perform Traditional Folk Stories on local children’s bookshops around New York City.
In the end, it turned out getting fired from that job turned out to be the right thing that could've happened—a couple of years later, I came back to the same production company as an actress… and the runners were serving me tea and coffee! In saying that, I don't only define myself as an 'actress'. In fact, I think of myself as a ‘Freelance Creative’ because I also am a producer, editor and puppeteer—and I love them all just the same.
One of my greatest accomplishments is starting my business Little Crowns Storyhouse in 2018. It started as a small local toddler group but during lockdown I began producing and creating digital shows online. Despite having a limited budget, I was able to produce a song and music video that raised money for the NHS. I also worked alongside The Sickle Cell Society to create a visual media campaign aimed at empowering children suffering from Sickle Cell Anaemia, I developed digital presentations featuring stories and songs highlighting Black British heroes. Since launching Little Crowns Storyhouse, various opportunities opened up such as writing for Ladybird Books' Peppa Pig series, working in development with Three Stones Media (creators of RastaMouse), and working with BBC children's and appearing in Disney's Disenchanted.
How being ND has shaped your career?
I've worn many hats throughout my career. This is not because I'm trying to be a jack of all trades. Instead, it's because my brain simply refuses to stick to one thing.
Therefore, I have been able to accomplish many things that have greatly benefited my career. As a result, it has been easy for me to use the skills I acquired along the way to apply them to every job I have ever had. I can adapt quickly to different situations, take on tasks others might not be qualified to handle, and still excel at them.