Little Angel Theatre 14 Dagmar Passage N1 2DN To 29 January 2012.
Runs 35min No interval.
TICKETS: 020 7226 1787.
Review: Timothy Ramsden 9 December.
A fine pizza theatre for 2+.
It’s enough to make Peter Pans of anyone; the thought that by staying in the 2-5 range you could continue to have such colourful, involving theatre available. An adventurous Goldilocks discovers and climbs into the three bears’ family home, tries out their beds and samples their pizza (rather than any porridge, though that seems also to be in the offing).
Befitting such a well-travelled person as this Goldilocks, there are continents of influence behind Osnat Schmool’s music, increasing the idea of the adventurous young heroine, while Candida Powell-Williams’ set provides a colourful background and posts for the venturesome Goldilocks to climb.
She’s a delicate, if strong character by the side of the more solid, less flexible puppet bears, who have their own internal comedy. And the joke’s on them inasmuch as their young visitor finds her way into their home while they’re out picnicking, leaving the pizza baking in the oven at home.
Nor does the name stand in the way; this is probably the least golden Goldilocks there’s been. But, resourceful as she is, she’s likely to gain the admiration and sympathy of young audience members. And, much-travelled as she has clearly been, the idea of a home is welcome to her, as it’s vital to young children.
Marleen Vermeulen’s production is beautifully performed by singers and puppeteers Corina Bana and Krystle Hilton, whose sympathetic manner combines with the small Goldilocks and various-size bear puppets in a gentle, well-paced and original piece of storytelling, respectful of the tale’s tradition, but also making it tactfully a part of the modern world.
It’s a kind of revolution in telling a traditional story, opening-up both notions of the girl Goldilocks – neither dumb nor blonde, and more likely to be a backpacker in little-travelled areas – and the assumption of a setting that’s either European (or European transported to the USA) or non-specified. It may be the setting here is non-specific, but that’s something else, for it calls upon several traditions.
By doing this through music, by keeping the story prominent and by avoiding point-making, this is a strong, inclusive and delightful production.
Performers: Corina Bona, Krystle Hylton.
Director: Marleen Vermeulen.
Designer/Costume: Candida Powell-Williams.
Lighting: David Duffy.
Composer: Osnat Schmool.
Puppets: Roger Lade, Julie Lade.