Windmill Theatre. Space Theatre. 14 April 2018
The Grug team are back in Adelaide after numerous successful tours locally and internationally. This gorgeous show garners rave reviews and repeat audiences where ever it goes, and with very good reason.
Combining a number of the picture books from Ted Prior's much-loved series, the piece is built around the title story 'Grug and the Rainbow'. Starting with his provenance after toppling from a Burrawang tree, we see Grug build his burrow and glimpse his first rainbow. After sadly failing to catch the rainbow, despite much effort, Grug's mission is to find a rainbow of his very own.
The plays three narrating puppeteers break through the fourth wall and excitedly decide that we should all help Grug to find the colours he needs. This fun and educational twist sees director Sam Haren weave in characters and storylines from other popular Grug books, including his adventures painting a house, visiting the beach and learning to ride a bike. The stories and the audience themselves provide the source for each new rainbow hue.
This show is a wonderful stage adaptation that breathes life into Prior's endearing and inquisitive treetop character. It is also one of the few truly brilliant theatre pieces for toddlers and preschool children.
The three performers are well cast and add much to production without upstaging the main event. Hamish Fletcher, Ezra Juanta and Astrid Pill are warm and friendly on stage and coordinate seamlessly between the numerous puppets. Juanta is a particular stand out, with his larger-than-life stage personality making him a fast favourite with the thigh-high contingent of the audience.
Jonathon Oxlade's small but delightfully intricate and versatile set is a joy to experience, and Tamara Rewse's Grug is just perfect.
This is a show for anyone, of any age, and if you've seen it before then treat yourself again. It's just as good the second time around.
When: 10 to 22 Apr 2018
Where: Space Theatre