THE LITTLE PRINCE
by Antoine de Saint-Exupery
translated by Ros & Chloe Schwartz
The Playground Theatre, 8 Latimer Industrial Estate, Latimer Road, London W10 6RQ to 7 January 2018.
Tues – Sat 7pm. Mat Sat & Sun 3pm. Extra mats Jan 1 & 2 3pm.
Runs 1 hr 45 mins One interval.
TICKETS: 020 8960 0110
Review: William Russell 18 December.
An enchanting show for the young and old
This tale by Saint-Exupery about the mysterious golden haired little prince who loves on a rather small asteroid with a rose is one of the world’s most translated and loved tales. A stranded aviator (Martin Oelbermann) whose plane has crashed in the Sahara meets the little man and they discuss his travels round the universe and to earth in search of who knows what. To get to earth and meet people it seems. The result is mysterious, and, like the book, spell binding.
With the help of some witty back projections and a large rubber ball on which he can stand, jump on and move around the stage Oelbermann recounts the adventures of the Little Prince and the animals and plants and inhabitants of other planets he meets on his travels. He is a splendid narrator, confiding as he goes along in the younger members of his audience who are seated on cushions at the front of the acting space. Over head are stars and the places, animals and people he meets are projected on to a vast sheet suspended against the back wall of the space. The result is story telling of the highest order, simple, direct, never condescending and the children in the audience agreed when he told them they should always be patient with grown-ups.
Just what to put on at Christmas is always a problem for small theatres and the brand new Playground, a potentially splendid addition to this part of London’s performance scene, has come up with a perfect solution. Saint-Exupery may have been writing for children but he also tells a tale which adults can take a great deal from as he pins down the traits of the people the Little Prince encounters on his journey to earth and back home to his asteroid, its volcanoes and his cherished rose.
Narrator and director: Martin Oelbermann.
Scenography, Costume & Lighting Design: Alison Neighbour.
Video Design: Adam Lansberry.
Walking Globe instructor: Mimosa Percy, Albert & Friends Instant Circus.