Stunning Summerhall

Summerhall is an absolutely brilliant venue, and every year the programme of shows and events gets bigger and better. They always host the Roundabout venue, which is well worth checking out. They have a delicious cafe and their own gin distillery and beer brewery which is a welcome touch ! It’s the perfect venue for spending an entire day, seeing shows and hanging out…

Once again, they have a fantastic line up of family friendly shows including these top picks:

How To Be A Kid– See our full review here. This show is suited to older children (age 7+) and has some spectacular storytelling and acting. ”Molly cooks. Molly does the dishes. Molly gets her little brother Joe ready for school. Molly is only 12, but she doesn’t feel much like a kid anymore. Now Molly’s Mum is feeling better, maybe things will get back to normal. Can you help Molly learn how to be a kid again?”

Jihan’s Smile – Only on until the 13th August. Al Harah Theatre is a theatre company based in the West Bank in Palestine, and is one of the longest running in the region, making theatre for both adults and children under extremely challenging circumstances. Jihan’s Smile tells the story of Jihan, an ordinary child, who woke up one day to discover that she had lost her smile.

Eaten – This one sounds really fun ! – What if your food started talking back? Meet Lionel the lion. He’s just eaten a human called Mamoru for lunch. But Lionel hasn’t chewed his food well. So Mamoru’s alive and well in his stomach, and now wants to say hello.

 

No Show – An all female circus troupe which sounds fab – What do you expect when you go to the circus? The glitzy smiles, the glitter of sequins, the drum rolls as performers effortlessly perform death-defying acts? No Show joyously and heartbreakingly goes behind the flawless smiles and perfect execution to reveal the wobbles, the pain, and the real cost of aiming for perfection.

 

So, plenty to keep you busy then !!!

 

 

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My Top Six Children’s Show at Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2017

As always, flicking through the festival programme I’m getting very excited and also have the familiar sense of being overwhelmed and spoilt for choice yet again as the number and variety of children’s shows available this year is fantastic !

Trying to whittle down what to recommend is extremely tricky ! There are some favourites of ours returning from last year along with some brilliant looking new shows from much loved theatre companies …I’ve put together the following top 6, but as before, please let me know your own recommendations, top picks or old favourites!! ( Some of my other favourites (such as the superb Nick Cope ) will feature in a later post on shows for littler little ones so I can squeeze in these six !!! )

  • How To Be A Kid – Paines Plough have absolutely wowed us the past two years with their shows in the unique Roundabout venue at Summerhall and this year’s show looks set to do the same. Molly cooks. Molly does the dishes. Molly gets her little brother Joe ready for school. Molly is only 12, but she doesn’t feel much like a kid anymore. Now Molly’s mum is feeling better, maybe things will get back to normal. Can you help Molly learn how to be a kid again?  4th – 20th August ( not 8th/15th)

 

  • The Road That Wasn’t There – Brought to us by the team behind The Bookbinder, Trick of the Light theatre are bound to bring something equally magical and spectacular with this new show about a girl who followed a map off the edge of the world… In New Zealand there are some 56,000 kilometres of paper roads – streets and towns that exist only on surveyors’ maps. Or do they? Puppetry, shadow play and music at it’s very best.    3rd-27th August (not 14th/21st)

 

  • Children Are Stinky – Children are also scaredy cats, lazy, unimaginative and uncoordinated in this madcap hour of acrobatic fun with loveable Australian clown duo ‘Kylie and Jason’. We loved this show last year (see here ), so if you missed it, do do check it out. Expect daredevil stunts, incredible acrobatics, lighting-fast hula hoops, loads of laughs and mischievous fun 3rd – 28th August (not 9th/16th/23rd)

 

  • The Gruffalo’s Child – Brought to the Fringe by the brilliant Tall Stories- Julia Donaldson’s much loved tale is brought to life in this magical, musical adaptation.    Because the Big Bad Mouse doesn’t really exist… does he? Join the Gruffalo’s child on his mischievous meander through the deep, dark woods…  2nd-20th August (not 5th/9th/16th)

 

  • Arr We There Yet ? – I was fortunate enough to catch the Head First Acrobats circus show Elixir last year and it was spectacular, so I’m very very excited about their children’s show this year ! A rip-roaring and swashbuckling adventure in which three sailors hit the high seas in search of treasure! A scallywag pirate, a muscular sailor and a chef with a seafood allergy make for a hopeless crew, as they fight for the title of captain aboard the ship.                             5th – 26th August (not 14th/21st)

 

  • David Walliams The First Hippo On The Moon Two big hippos. One enormous dream. Who can make it to the moon first? Three… Two… One… blast off! Adapted for the stage by Les Petits Theatre Company following their tour of Captain Flinn and the Pirate Dinosaurs, this looks like it’s going to be a fun and creative show for fans of the book and little ones alike.   2nd- 20th August (not 15th)

Spectacular Summerhall…

Summerhall just continues to get better and better, offering a wider range of shows and events over the festival, along with providing a delicious cafe and a lovely courtyard for hanging out in and sampling their very own Pickering’s Gin and Barney’s Beer…you could happily spend a day or two here exploring everything it has to offer…

Once again they have a great line up of family shows this festival, my top picks being :

I got Superpowers for my birthday – I saw this today and will write a review shortly, but it is FANTASTIC, absolutely spellbinding storytelling and I highly recommend it ! A mesmerising tale of three 13 years olds who wake on their birthday to discover they have superpowers and must save the world from the darkness….

 

Mikey and Addie – Mikey is a sunny boy. He lives alone with his mum. Mikey’s mum has a secret. It’s not well kept.  Everyone knows it. Everyone except Mikey. Addie is a good girl. She doesn’t tell lies. Her father makes sure of that. Addie tells the truth. It’s what you have to do. Isn’t it? It’s hard to tell when your life will change. The day you wake up normal but end up falling far from everything you’ve ever known. Spinning into nothingness. Today is that day.  For ages 9+

Squirrel Stole My Underpants – In this poignantly silly adventure tale for families, Sylvie is sent to the backyard to hang up the laundry. The moment her back is turned, a mischievous squirrel steals her favourite piece of clothing and runs off. When Sylvie gives chase, an entire world emerges from her laundry basket.

 

The Adventure of Puppets – Two engaging and skilfully silly actors bring to life an array of ordinary objects, conjuring a DIY universe full of raucous fun and inventive play. Here a mop becomes a puppy, a hammer can turn into a horse and a home-made ship flies high in the sky. It’s all about taking what’s near to hand and then letting your imagination go.

 

Us/Them – This looks like quite an intense story to base a performance on and so is recommended for older children ages 9+. In September 2004, during a school hostage drama in Beslan, the greatest of evils (terrorists) chose the greatest good (a group of children) as their victim. Us/Them is not a straightforward account of this terrible drama, but is about the entirely individual way children cope with extreme situations.

 

 

 

Splendid Summerhall…

I do love Summerhall – it is a fantastic venue that has constantly grown and developed over the past few years and now hosts such an exciting festival line-up. It is also a great venue in itself, with a cool cafe that is perfect for families and those bringing buggies/pushchairs and Summerhall even boasts its own brewery and now a Gin distillery too !

This year Summerhall plays host to a wide variety of family shows – here are a few of my top picks :

  • The Voice ThiefWelcome to The MacKenzie Institute for the Encouragement of Vocal Harmony, a darkly mysterious place where hundreds of girls’ voices have been held captive for years. This is the first time that the public have been allowed into The Institute and it may also be the last one. Aged 9 +

 

  • Chicken Licken and The Little Red Hen – Mixed into this recipe of food, puppets and music is the story of Little Red Hen and the sly Foxy Loxy. Will she outwit him and save her stuffing?

 

 

  • Anatomy of the piano (for beginners)I think this show looks fascinating and musical treat   – “Will asks Father Christmas for a spaceship – he gets a piano! This is a breathtaking adventure into the world of pianos, revealing where they come from, how they evolved and why they make a pretty cool Christmas present.”

  • Our Teacher’s a Troll – Two terrible twins with a talent for turmoil rule their school with terror and tyranny, until the arrival of a new head teacher with green scaly skin, sharp fangs and a long spiky tail.

Supreme Summerhall…

Summerhall is a fantastic venue….the cafe is great, its an interesting building to explore and the courtyard is a lovely place to sit in the sun and there is always an exhibition or two to discover on a visit. Not only all this but they have a great little room where they have ‘Animal Antics‘ – a place where you can play with your child, do arts and crafts and generally have lots of fun. Sadly this space is closed from July 3rd but they have an alternative and very exciting sounding room instead for the festival :

Jolly JungleJollyJungle_Logo Summerhall’s Fringe Play Space – this is for 0-6 year olds and looks ace…a perfect space to play with the children and find some peace and quiet inbetween all the shows ! Featuring toys, soft play, arts and crafts and a story corner for little-ies.

August 5th – 24th  Tuesday – Sunday (closed Mondays and also closed Friday 8th and Staurday 9th too).   Costs £2 per child for 1 hour of play / 6months £1  Open 11am – 4.30pm

On top of all this, they are hosting some great sounding children’s shows too ! Here are my top picks :

Duck, Death and the Tulip – A duck strikes up an unlikely friendship with death…using mime, magic and puppets to deal with a dfiifcult subject.

August 5th – 24th (not 11th/18th)   10.00

Kid Box Kid explores the relationship between mother and kid through lighting and sound design and Box breaks the barrier of dream and reality – ‘ A powerful double bill of dance transforms poetry into body language.’

August 5th – 24th (not 11th/18th)    13.00

The Worm – An Underground Adventure – Join Wilma and William, two nature lovers, on a journey underground as they discover a family of friendly, musical worms and their colourful miniature world.  The Worm is a fun filled musical tale guaranteed to make everyone giggle, wiggle and love the squirmy wonders beneath our feet.

August 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th and 16th, 17th           10.30