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Children's shows - reviews

Justin and Friends Live

LG Arena, Birmingham
11 April 2013, 1.30pm

Let’s get ready to Tumble!

There were so many under 5s packed into the LG Arena that I thought I had wandered into a One Direction gig by mistake. And judging by what was going on around us, I suspect the atmosphere was very similar. Varying levels of hysteria!

Youngsters seemed beyond excited as various Gigglebiz characters appeared on a big screen to warm us all up, while adults looked slightly wide eyed and crazed after having spent the best part of a tenner on a yellow sponge thumb from the merchandise stall! Or a flashing ball on a stick.

By the time the main event started we were certainly all ready to Tumble!!

Justin Fletcher knows absolutely what to do to keep thousands of youngsters completely entertained, and as I can barely manage it with one, I watched with admiration, took my hat off to him, and silently wished I could take him home!

Colourful and lively

The show is colourful, very lively, has plenty of corny jokes and packs in loads of your child’s favourite characters – in short, it’s a bit of a Justin’s House, Something Special and Gigglebiz mash-up.

Robert the Robot and Little Monster join CBeebies favourite’s Nina (without her Neurons), “Wild” Andy Day and Katy (She can cook you know) Ashworth in Justin’s House to decide which song they are going to perform for a VIP who is coming to see the show.

This gives the perfect excuse to perform lots of musical numbers, and keep performing them, because Robert keeps sucking up all the props and performers with his vacuum cleaner – so they handily have to find a new one.

The song and dance is interspersed with Gigglebiz favourites such as Arthur Sleep and Keith Fit on the big screen keeping the story moving, while Nana Knickerbocker and Lost Pirate have big numbers of their own.

Excitement levels

In fact, Lost Pirate really did seem lost, when we practically bumped into him when we came out of the toilets during the first half as he was preparing to make his entrance through the audience.

V has yet to learn performance etiquette and it was all I could do to stop her throwing herself at him in excitement, while I gave a knowing nod and a quick smile trying to distract from the wriggling three-year-old under my arms as I tried to pretend he wasn’t there!

The second half was opened by Something Special’s Mr Tumble, who is clearly the pre-schoolers equivqalent of Harry Styles, as the excitement levels went up a few notches when he made an entrance.

All around me youngsters where dancing and shouting out and thorough enjoying themselves. Except for V, who normally can’t sit still for five seconds, and is always dancing round the living room, but watched the whole thing absolutely intently, from her chair.

This however, is how I know she is thoroughly enjoying it!

She only shouted out when something particularly caught her attention – “Mummy, no one is drving the pirate ship!” she said, pointing out the ship’s wheel that was spinning on its own!

But during this quiet contemplation and being absolutely transfixed she takes in every move.

Apart from the homage to James Bond and the Olympics (that’s got you wondering hasn’t it?!) my highlight was the finale – a trio of songs, Best of Friends, Hands Up and S Club 7’s Reach for the Stars (which inexplicably makes me feel a bit tearful!)

It got both youngsters and adults on their feet dancing. Except of course for V – who watched it all wide-eyed, then recreated the whole thing once we got home!

In her three years on this earth, V has seen a live Justin show three times and this one was the best yet.

V’s Verdict

The bit with the vacuum cleaner was really funny!


One thought on “Justin and Friends Live

  1. where can i buy the yellow plastic mr tumble mug that was on merchandise stand at justin & friends live?

    Posted by cathy royston | 28/04/2013, 10:35 am

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