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“Engaging and zany theatre for young children”

There’s an art to writing something that will amuse and entrance small children while also making adults laugh out loud.

Sarah Middleton pulls this off, in her professional debut, with a script that is witty, tender and full of fun.

In Hannah Stone’s production, performed in the Neville studio space, the children can engage with the story and the characters – kindly Geppetto (Ben Welch), longing for a child of his own, and Pinocchio, who wants to be a real river-swimming, pebble-throwing boy.

Pinocchio is played with infectious happiness by the convincingly child-like Karr Kennedy. She uses whatever is at hand to make us believe her nose is growing. Welch plays a parade of other characters too, mostly female and including a red-headed and very arch Lady Mayoress and a disillusioned Blue Fairy.

Georgie White’s versatile set transforms from fairground to the Big City. Jiminy Cricket is a darting, kazoo-voiced beam of light. The excluded boy, threatened with being chopped up for firewood, throws away the magic potion, learns to be happy with himself and dances his own dance.

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Production Details
Production namePinocchio
VenueNottingham Playhouse
StartsDecember 11, 2019
EndsJanuary 4, 2020
Running time1hr
AuthorSarah Middleton
DirectorHannah Stone
Set designerGeorgie White
Lighting designerWill Welch
Sound designerDarren Clark
CastBen Welch, Karr Kennedy
Stage managerHazel Monaghan, Louise Pearson
VerdictEngaging, zany and occasionally beautiful theatre for small children
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