Cardiff was very lucky this half term as the New Theatre played host to one of the first stop-offs for Peppa Pig’s Surprise! Live Tour.Peppa Pig has been keeping theatre audiences captivated for the past few years as the live shows have taken hold. This year was definitely no exception, it is fantastic to see theatres full to the rafters, and more importantly how wonderfully captivated little people become as full size puppets of their favourite characters take to the stage.
Daisy, a wonderfully engaging narrator and friend to all, begins the show with a game of hide and seek, with lots of audience interaction, we are introduced to Danny Dog, Suzy Sheep, Pedro Pony, and of course Peppa and George.
Mummy Pig and Daddy Pig are welcomed to the stage with their exciting news, a special surprise is in store. There’s more fun with guessing, muddy puddles and a resultant bath.
The puppets and staging are fantastic, bath-time was so much fun, as was the transition to bunk beds at bedtime, and my little monkeys especially loved Daisy’s bedtime story.
And then it’s time for the surprise, and a trip in the all so familiar little red car. At this point I would love to highlight how much I appreciated the song in the car, of course based on ‘Are we nearly there yet?”.
To the beach, and at this point CM realised this was an episode she remembered which cheered her up, and I might have had a little ‘whoop’ when Mr Potato made an appearance (he’s definitely my favourite!).
With lots more stage magic as the friends go searching rock pools, and before we know it the day is almost done- and yes, of course they do remember where they left Daddy Pig!There is no knocking the production, it’s amazingly slick, introducing so much to the young audience, and ensuring audience engagement and interaction throughout.
My children are at the older cusp of Peppa Pig now, and it definitely didn’t take away from their enjoyment- they really did love it.
For me, well, my patience where young children’s theatre is concerned is wearing a bit thin now, I love watching how much my children are enjoying the theatre, and Peppa Pig definitely ticked that box. But so many children and protective parents in one space, probably not so much.
The New Theatre is a beautiful building, a favourite theatre of mine since a child, but far from practical for parents with buggies. So, my final plea, if you happen to be at the New Theatre in the future for a show focused at young children- and if you see someone struggling up or down the stairs with a buggy and you have a spare hand- Help them! When you get out of the building- don’t stand outside the doors, don’t block the pedestrian crossing. If you’re looking for a meeting point, head towards Queen Street’s pedestrian area, don’t huff as a buggy clips your ankles when you’re clearly blocking the thoroughfare.
And that’s that, thoughts put to paper and out of my head, now I’m left with happy thoughts, of the captivated faces. And of “bing bong bing”!
Peppa Pig’s Surprise is now on its 2015-2016 tour, check out the website for dates across Britain, and you are, or are in the possession of, a fan of Peppa and her friends, it is definitely worth you getting to your local theatre.
Disclosure: We received a family ticket for Peppa Pig Live! for the purposes of this review. All opinions and views contained are our own.