Review: Esplanade Play Time’s The Magic Jungle

We went to watch Esplanade Play Time’s other offering, The Magic Ocean a while back and decided that since we loved that, we would go catch their other offering The Magic Jungle when it came round and I am so glad we decided to do so.

This show is designed for pre-school kids and the show- with their fairly simple humor, music and antics was a big hit with my 2.5yo and the rest of the same-age bracket crowd. There were several older kids who seemed a little bored after a while but the rest of the audience- and the accompanying parents, thoroughly enjoy it. Q even left the theatre singing and mimicking what he saw.

From the show website:

The jungle is full of animals that come out to play when the sun goes down.
Can you see the cockatoos, the sloth bear, the flying fox and the gibbons?
Can you help the tiger and the leopard to find their stripes and spots?
Glide, stomp, swing and jump through the Magic Jungle with Paige!


Review: Fantastic Mr. Fox

I have always been a fan of Roald Dahl and while Fantastic Mr. Fox is not one of my top favorites (top fav goes to Matilda, which I have just learned has just been brought to broadway) it was a fairly good read and I decided to take Q to watch the staging of it when SRT decided to run it this theatre season.

The show is basically a retelling of the book: Mr Fox doing his best- and finally succeeding; in outwitting three devious farmers whom he has been stealing from to feed his starving family and other digger, underground living creatures like the badgers, moles and rabbits.

The story wasn’t particular complicated and Q (2.5yo) managed to comfortably follow the story line, the show was a tad long (90min) and towards the second half, I felt every minute of it.

However, the whole place was filled with primary school and kindergarten kids who made a ton of noise (they were prompted to boo the farmers at the start) that spoiled the whole show for me since it made it hard to hear what was happening and their teacher’s constant shushing did nothing to help. The sound crew did a poor job with the microphones and the first lines of each many characters were lost; we were seated fairly near so we could sort of hear what was happening.

I think this show is pretty good for older kids, unless you have a little one that can sit for the duration of the show.

From the SRT website:

This November, SRT’s The Little Company presents Fantastic Mr Fox by Roald Dahl – the world’s favourite children’s author. Adapted for stage by David Wood, Fantastic Mr Fox is a classic tale of goodies and baddies. It is an inspiring story about the brave Mr Fox who devises a plan to steal food from three mean farmers in order to feed his family. The farmers, Boggis, Bunce and Bean, try to get Mr Fox by any means possible. But with the help of his family and his friend, the Badger, Mr Fox outsmarts the farmers at every turn. Filled with humour and packed with action, this is a fantastic show to be enjoyed by children of all ages.

Review: Cat in the Hat

We love Dr Seuss’ The Cat in the Hat the book and it was one of the earliest books W and I bought for Q. That’s why parents like us buy Dr Seuss’ stuff for our kids, so we can also (re)read the whole series again.

Anyway, The Cat in the Hat was showing and we were most excited to take Q to catch it. Of course, to prepare we re read the book again. Q has been watching The Cat in the Hat knows a lot about that and has become very well acquainted with Nick, Sally, Thing 1, Thing 2 and the ever so cool Thinga-ma-jigger; so he was all well excited to go.

The show itself was basically a staged version of the book, with a voiceover reading out the book and characters dressed up- with complete blue hair for Thing 1 and Thing 2, full cat suit for The Cat…etc… It wasn’t the cleverest of theatre work, but seeing as the bulk of the audience were preschoolers, it was ok. The actors presented the book well- clear diction, clear delivery and over-the-top acting. They even brought in the Thinga-ma-jigger at which point, my son clapped like it was New Years Day.

The whole show was about 40 mins long which made for a great telling of the book but the $25 per ticket price tag a little expensive by preschool theatre standards. But in any case, when the show ended, Q all out declared: Bravo!

From the Sistic website: Based on the all-time favourite book by Dr. Seuss, The Cat in the Hat has been developed into a magically witty play by Britain’s National Theatre which will be faithfully reproduced by SRT’s The Little Company.

If you have ever read a Dr. Seuss book, you will love this production of The Cat In The Hat. Every Dr. Seuss story is a lesson in grammar, syntax, scansion, phonics, morality, ethics, tolerance and the human spirit.

Sally and her brother get a surprise visit from The Cat in the Hat. With his endless tricks and whacky ideas, he certainly turned a dull rainy afternoon into one amazing adventure. 

Joined by the twin mischief-makers, Thing 1 and Thing 2, The Cat in the Hat promises to be a purr-fect day out for both children and parents alike!

Bake and Go @ TOTT Store

We usually do our baking at home but once in a while- mainly for novelty sake, and cos I don’t always wish to have to clear up; we head over to TOTT Store (next door to us!) for a spot of baking at their Bake & Go section.

Its mainly for parents with kids to leave them somewhere for a stint while parents go shopping  but, still, its a great place for kids and even parents to spend sometime doing stuff together. For S$12.80 (inclusive GST) you get an apron and your own tin of cookie dough (available in chocolate, vanilla and strawberry) and a some choc chips. You can buy other additives for a small fee; Q usually goes for the rainbow sprinkles. And you’re ready to go!

The nice uncle in charge (maybe there’s an aunty too, but we’ve always only ever met uncle Cookie) ushers you to your own baking station and you bake away. They have cookie cutters for use if you prefer a slightly more structured cookies. We personally just like to flatten them out.

Once you are done, Uncle Cookie (that’s what he told Q his name was) sends them into the oven and you come back in about 20 minutes and pack your own cookies into the now empty cookie dough tin.

Viola! Cookies!

Review: Ace! Festival- Hare Brain

Of all the shows we caught at the Ace! Festival! I enjoyed Hare Brain the least.

Don’t get me wrong, the show in itself was decent- a modern take on Aesop’s famous “slow and steady wins the race” contrasted the harried young executive called Harriet against her zen cleaning lady, Lucy. Harriet, rushing a deadline is taken through a zen/awakening dream journey by the yoga-teacher like Lucy, where thereafter she decides the harried life was not for her.

The props were cleverly constructed- using recycled materials to make the turtles and more but ultimately lost on the bulk of their young audience who got restless from the lack of action in the show. Q actually fell asleep midway- and I let him, seeing as most of the other little kids there felt the same.

From the synopsis:
Hare Brain is a critically acclaimed re-telling of Aesop’s classic Hare and the Tortoise from one of Australia’s leading children’s theatre companies. Gentle Lucy, a cleaning lady, and Harriet, a marketing executive, must race against time to find the perfect story to fit the perfect toy…… but will fast and furious or slow and steady win their race? Slapstick comedy, inventive puppetry and extraordinary characters create a madcap production of this quest for ‘the great’ new (toy) story. Everyday objects are magically transformed into a fantastical world of inventions as Harriet and Lucy discover that by helping each other see things differently the most extraordinary things can happen…. (And) your broom may never look the same again.