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The Scarecrows’ Wedding

Edward Day and Muireann Bird in The Scarecrows' Wedding at Underbelly George Square, Edinburgh.Photo: Steve Ullathorne

Scamp Theatre’s big-stage adaptation of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s young children’s bestseller The Scarecrows’ Wedding is a highly entertaining all-family show, boosting this company’s established reputation for children’s theatre.

Its seamless direction by Eva Sampson, an enchanting and often hilarious mix of well-paced scenes, Darren Clark’s appealingly simple songs such as Passing of the Seasons and Love of a Scarecrow, the ingenious use of rustic props on James Button’s green hillside set and plentiful comedy make this production a sure-fire success for toddlers-plus audiences.

Betty O’Barley and Harry O’Hay, two jolly scarecrows who dance, play and picnic, plan to get married. But when Harry sets off to buy his true love wedding presents, the farmer thinks he has gone forever. Needing a replacement, he imports Reginald Rake from France, who soon dashingly professes his affection for Betty in his fast car – but Harry returns just in time for the confetti-covered wedding finale.

Muireann Bird and Edward Day hugely please as Betty and Harry, rollicking through rural scenes and singing to mini-accordion and banjo strains. Paul Brendan is amusingly versatile as the farmer, Reginald Rake and assorted animals.

The use of props constantly amuses: the farmer’s white socks become a pair of geese, a clothes-line with bells represent make-believe cows, black gloves on sticks are flapping crows and a green spacehopper becomes a pompous toad. It all adds up to bags of sheer family fun.

Verdict
Successfully entertaining adaptation of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler's bestseller for younger children

Production

Production
The Scarecrows' Wedding
Venue
Underbelly George Square
City
Edinburgh
Starts
August 6, 2015
Ends
August 31, 2015
Authors
Julia Donaldson, Axel Scheffler
Music
Darren Clark
Lyrics
Darren Clark
Director
Eva Sampson
Choreographer
Joanne McShane
Design
James Button (set/costume), Elanor Higgins (lighting)
Stage manager
Bethan Mair Hughes
Cast includes
Muireann Bird, Edward Day, Paul Brendan
Producer
Scamp Theatre
Running time
1hr