Scores of youngsters sang happy birthday to children's book character Spot the dog after seeing him in a play.
They had seen a production of Spot's Birthday Party at Curve, in Leicester, written by David Wood, who had adapted the story from the books by Eric Hill.
Mr Wood joined members of the cast as they mingled with children and their parents after the 55-minute performance yesterday.
The show is part of this year's two-week Spark Festival, which runs until June 9.
It presents theatre, dance and music performances and visual and digital events for children aged up to 13, in theatres, school and community venues.
Festival spokeswoman Francesca Wright said: "We have a very good crowd for the first showing on Friday. The children, who were aged from two to five, loved mixing with the cast and we were delighted that David Wood was at the theatre to see the adaptation."
There is another performance of the production today.
Francesca said: "We have a number of exciting productions during the festival.
"People can also seek out free events at Phoenix and New Walk Museum.
"We have magical shows for all ages, as well as opportunities to participate."