encouraging make believe – theatre trips with toddlers…

Now that our eldest minis have reached three, minis & more… have started to take them on a few theatre trips. It is such an enjoyable thing to do, and has really encouraged their love of all things make believe. As we write this, Harry and Harriet are running about the house re-enacting the Aladdin pantomime.
We have been to a couple of shows that we would recommend…
We had a group trip to the Corn Exchange in Newbury to see The Gruffalo musical in the autumn. One of Tall Stories’ productions, the show cannot be compared to the illustrative delights that the book delivers, or the magic that the television adaptation creates, but as a stand-alone production it is enjoyable and creative, and our minis were entranced and delighted seeing the story come to life. What Tall Stories did very cleverly, was catering to their mini audience by humanising the characters and as a result, not making the animals too scary.

                               Illustration copyright Axel Scheffler and Macmillan Children’s Books and production photos copyright Tall Stories

Last month Harriet went on a great trip to St James Theatre in London to see The Snow Dragon, another production by Tall Stories. Full of festive magic, laughs and songs, she was mesmerised from beginning to end. The golden rule of the story was a good one too – “do as you would be done by”.

                                     Illustration copyright Anna Lewenhaupt and Tall Stories and bottom right photo copyright Tall Stories

Lastly, we decided to end the Christmas festivities on a high this weekend with a trip to the Aladdin Pantomime, again at Newbury Corn Exchange. We (especially the dads!) all entered with trepidation, expecting your typically overtly naff, badly acted panto, but no… We had nothing to worry about. What a riot, I don’t think we stopped laughing! The cast were impressive, the story-line well written and the set was beautifully colourful and well made. The mere fact that the minis sat still for 2 1/2 hours speaks volumes. A real must-see for next Christmas if you are anywhere near the area.
Our advice… as long as your minis are happy to sit and concentrate for relatively long periods of time, don’t need loo breaks too often and aren’t overwhelmed by changes in lighting or loud noises, then we would definitely recommend a trip out to the theatre.
We’re off to Room on the Broom in April, so will report back.
Georgie, Katie and Sally


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