29 November 2015
Reviewed by Linzi Davies
Another trip to The Lowry, this time with my youngest son to look after me. Whilst dad and the two other children went off Christmas shopping in the vast array of unusual stores, we went to acquaint ourselves with the above show specifically aimed at 2-7 year old children. On arrival we collected our tickets and were pointed in the general direction of the studio, which was up a couple of flights of stairs, whilst lifts were available I did think that maybe it wasn’t the best choice of stages for a show aimed at such young children. A slight technical hitch with lighting meant we were kept outside until about 11:10 before taking our seats in the very intimate theatre with a staged area at the front which contained of a number of brightly coloured boxes and other props hiding behind the silver covers.
The show starred two ladies dressed as elves who narrated the story through both word and song. They also operated the puppets which appeared in the show and dressed up to portray Patrick the Polar Bear postman and The Magic Bird with the multicoloured umbrella.
The general gist was that Santa had written a letter to all the children saying that Christmas was cancelled as thieves had broken in and stolen all of the presents. Katie, a friendly puppet girl decides that it wasn’t acceptable and strives to solve the mystery of the stolen presents and save Christmas. With the help of a colourful advent calendar containing clues that the audience helped to solve and animals such as Fergus the cuddly artic fox, Petra the puffin and Patrick the polar bear, the adventure is shared, enjoyed and giggled throughout.
The two actors kept the young audience entertained and interaction was the name of the game as members of the audience were invited up to wake Katie with the tickle stick and throw snowballs amongst other things.
The story was easy to follow for the audience and the mystery was solved and all the children received their presents. I won’t spoil the ending!
The scenery was cleverly changed just by turning a few blocks, as part of each scene was painted on each block so as they were turned around the jigsaw was complete and a new scene magically appeared. In places the backing track was a little loud as it was difficult to hear the actors speak.
Overall a highly enjoyable performance which captivated my 4 year old perfectly and he later regaled the whole story to his brother and sister over a subway sandwich.
For other shows at The Lowry in Manchester visit www.thelowry.com.
The Lowry, Pier 8, Salford Quays, Manchester, M50 3AZ | 0843 208 6000