Boosting Our Economy - Celebrating Our Culture - Enhancing Our Children's Education

Boosting Our Economy - Celebrating Our Culture - Enhancing Our Children's Education

News & Events

BBC shares first-look at A Kind of Spark series two as launch date confirmed

Date Posted: April 8, 2024

After winning best children’s programme at the RTS Awards and Broadcast Awards 2024, series two lands on BBC iPlayer this month as part of World Autism Month

Watch the preview here. 

Award-winning live action series A Kind of Spark, made by 9 Story Media Group for CBBC, returns for series two on BBC iPlayer on 26 April and CBBC on 29 April.

A Kind of Spark is a powerful series about the joys of friendship, sisterhood, the drama of growing up, based on the best-selling book by neurodivergent author, Elle McNicoll. Filmed in Northern Ireland with support from Northern Ireland Screen, A Kind of Spark has authentic representation throughout its production with lead characters played by neurodivergent actors including, Addie (Lola Blue), Keedie (Georgia De Gidlow), and Nina (Caitlin Hamilton) along with Bonnie (Ella Maisy Purvis), a new character for series two.

It tells the inspirational story of an autistic teenager Addie. When she learns about the witch trials that happened centuries ago in her hometown of Juniper, Addie knows that there’s more to the story of these ‘witches’, just as there is more to her own. Series two takes place in the summer following on from the events of series one, and a face from the past and a mysterious bookshop bring new challenges for Addie and her loved ones. Can Addie work out what’s next?

Key themes of series two are growing up through an autistic lens, learning there’s more than one way to be, and how to handle internal and external pressure.

A Kind of Spark has won multiple awards this year, including the Children’s Programme award at the RTS Awards 2024 and the Best Children’s Programme at the Broadcast Awards 2024. Elle McNicoll’s book has also won the Blue Peter Book Award and the Overall Waterstones Children’s Book Prize.

Inclusivity is at the heart of the show both on and off screen. Almost half the cast and crew are neurodivergent, and the production team worked closely with the cast to be mindful of sensory or stimulation points in regard to wardrobe, hair, make-up and set, and each filming location had a sensory room or trailer for cast who needed a safe, quiet space.

A Kind of Spark is created for television by Anna McCleery (Free Rein, Secret Life of Boys) and executive produced for 9 Story Media Group by Gráinne McNamara. Lead writers are Anna McCleery and Elle McNicoll (A Kind of Spark, Show Us Who You Are) with Karissa Hamilton-Bannis, Vicki Lutas and Scott Payne.

Elle McNicoll says: “I’m so thrilled that we are back for season two of A Kind of Spark. The response from audiences has been just incredible and I am proud that our show will continue to show a nuanced and empathetic portrayal of autistic people. Autism is not a binary, it is a vast spectrum, and I’m proud to write for a show that champions this.”

Patricia Hidalgo, Director of BBC Children’s and Education, says: “We are beyond excited to return to Juniper for series two of A Kind of Spark! It’s a brilliant show that originates from a powerful story about the universal themes of friendship, sisterhood and growing up whilst showcasing neurodiversity in an organic and engaging way. Over the last year, the show has built a strong community and won many awards, which is a real testament to the power of storytelling to bring people together and the importance of reflecting diverse lives and experiences of young people on screen.”

Natalie Osborne, Chief Strategy Officer of 9 Story Media Group, says: “We are thrilled to be sharing a new season of A Kind of Spark! Our talented creative team, cast and crew have crafted a series that has embraced representation at its core, and it’s been extremely moving to see how Addie’s story has resonated with audiences far and wide.”

A Kind of Spark series 2 will be available on BBC iPlayer from 26 April and CBBC from 29 April.


© 2024 Northern Ireland Screen. All Rights Reserved