Bouncing onto the stage with the energy of men half their age - but not, sadly, with their famous big red car - the Wiggles have looked to the circus to perk-up the simple sing-along children’s songs format that has made their name. And with a troupe of assorted singing and dancing acrobatic aerialists to add visual depth, the result is a much looser, more flowing show.
The core of the Wiggles’ attraction is still sound, however. Around the songs and the characters with all their assorted rituals, an endearing lack of slickness keeps the whole production fresh. It really is as if, for all their success as Australia’s highest-earning entertainers, they are still four lads goofing around with their mates, having a grand time throwing down a whole bunch of rock-n-roll riffs with crazy little lyrics about Joeys Jumping on the Bed over the top.
The circus format is not just there to give 57-year-old Jeff Fatt, the purple Wiggle, extra opportunities to show off his headstands and trapeze work. With Simon Pryce as Ringo, the World’s Greatest Ringmaster, pushing the production forward, the songs and routines move much more easily one into the next. The various acrobatic routines are well worked into the songs, too.
It’s the Wiggles themselves who are very much in control, however. They are the ones cracking jokes with the audience, posing for photographs, and ensuring that Paul Paddick as Captain Feathersword is up and singing correctly. A solid production which fills the stage with performers but never tries to be too flash for its core pre-school audience and their parents.