Market Theatre, Hitchin
11.30am, 21 December 2015
To be honest we just loved this. Three totally engaging actors, minimal props, simple set, a witty script and three catchy songs (which we’re still singing by the way!) all went to show that you don’t need a tonne of glitter and inappropriate celebrity casting to enthrall children.
The Market Theatre have taken the traditional and familiar story of the girl who goes to visit her grandmother but on arrival discovers she has met a grisly end.
This delightful production removes some of the gore that I’ve always thought was a bit much for young children, and – no spoilers here – but they’ve slightly changed the plot to deliver important messages, while the essence of the story – and the more famous “What big eyes” etc etc phrases – still remain.
All the actors really know how to engage with young and old and made the adults chuckle as much as the children. And in the small Market Theatre it was a bit like they were entertaining you in your front room and the performance was just for you.
There’s loads of audience participation and while I found I was sitting there with a massive goofy smile on my face, my five-year-old daughter, who normally looks round the audience wearily rolling her eyes when other children are shouting out “behind you” – was calling out to her heart’s content and belly laughing as the wolf is tricked.
It’s fast-paced – the 50 minutes or so fairly flew by – and it made for a perfect pre-lunch treat to break up the Christmas shopping!
I learnt that you should never go off with strangers and the police are there to help you!
I loved the wolf when he was dancing – that was very funny. I liked it when we all pretended to be stuff, especially the thing the wolf was scared of most!
It was also funny when they kept going on about Great Uncle Joseph from Canada.
Run time: About 50 minutes with no interval.
Age range: Advertised as for 4-9 year-olds but I reckon younger siblings will be OK!