My name is Lily-Sue, but my mummy calls me Munchkin (or 'Munch' for short!) I am 8 years old, and this is where my mummy will help me write all about all the fun things we do together. I hope you enjoy reading about the adventures of my mummy and me, Munchkin, with the occasional appearance from the siblings - Beastie and Plumlet.

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

In The Night Garden Live 2014 *Review*

"Up Daisy, Piggle Piggle, Makka Makka, FRIENDS!"

This is what we keep hearing, several times a day, from Beastie Boo ever since we took her to see In The Night Garden Live at London's O2 last month. 

Beastie is a huge In The Night Garden fan. A superfan! A megafan!! Watching the show on CBeebies Bedtime Hour is an absolute essential part of the bedtime routine, and if for any reason we miss it, a back-up recording will be employed immediately! Upsy Daisy is her favourite character, however, she wouldn't be complete without her friends around her!

Beastie didn't really understand what was going on or where we were going as we made our way in the car to the O2 in London. Munch came too, but she knew exactly what was going on! She had been before. Twice! Once on her 2nd birthday in 2011 and again in 2012. This year, however, was all about Beastie Boo! 

A little bit of a frantic start to the day and some unexpected travel sickness from Beastie (very unusual for her!) meant a clothes change on our arrival. Personally, I think she did it just so she could get an Upsy Daisy t-shirt from the Gift Shop! As we walked through the Show Dome towards the auditorium, the instantly recognisable In The Night Garden theme music could be heard, echoing through the tunnels. Beastie's excitement spiked straight away. She started calling for Upsy Daisy and Iggle Piggle, straining to see round corners before we had even reached them. We took to our seats just as the show was beginning, and from that moment on, Beastie rarely took her eyes away from the stage! She joined in with the screams and cheers as Iggle Piggle appeared on the stage, and sang along to his much loved song!

She was engrossed!
Completely blown away!
At points, the excitement was almost too much, and she tensed up so much, she was shaking!

This was pure magic for her!

In The Night Garden Live, which is still touring until mid-September, 2014, has been visiting locations around the UK and setting up its special, purpose built Show Dome ready for children to come and share the magic that it offers in the perfectly constructed performance. We attended The Ninky Nonk show, but The Pinky Ponk show is also available, the two performances alternating throughout the day. Each production lasts a little short of an hour, which I feel is the perfect length for the age of children that it is aimed at.

One of the best things about the show, is that it is set out exactly like an episode that the children would be familiar with on the television. Each programme follows the same format: Introduce each character, tell the story, recap the story, say goodnight. The stage performance followed the exact same format, bringing instant familiarity to the young audience!

In this story, Iggle Piggle loses his much loved red blanket.

Children are invited to join him and his friends in their search for Iggle Piggle's blanket. Enthusiastic cries fill the Show Dome as children of varying ages call to their favourite characters as they interact with their audience. Familiar sounds and music can be heard throughout and well known images are projected onto the ceiling and the walls of the Dome's interior, constantly stimulating the senses and capturing the attention of every child watching! As for the characters, they are as true to life as you would see them on the television. With Iggle Piggle, Upsy Daisy and Makka Pakka as actors in suits, and the Tombliboos and Pontipines being puppets, cleverly manipulated by wonderful puppeteers who remain in character themselves the whole time too, Makka Pakka also appears as a puppet when on the stage with Iggle Piggle and Upsy Daisy to remain true to the proportions and sizes of the characters.

The auditorium itself is very well thought out too. Children of this age are not always that good at sitting still. This is especially true for Beastie! She is constantly on the go! Well, movement is very much encouraged at In The Night Garden Live. They want children to be out of their seats, clapping, singing, dancing and being generally excited. And therefore, the seating is arranged to enable such activity. There are no individual chairs. Just tiered steps all the way along, allowing spectators to sit wherever they like and giving plenty of space for little ones to move around. 

The performance itself it absolutely wonderful, and as I mentioned before, this is the third time we have been and each time, the quality of acting has been just as enthusiastic as the time before. It feels as thought they love the job they are doing, and this shines through the performances! The use of music, dialogue, lighting, image projection and sound effects grab the most active imaginations and seem to hold the attention of the most easily distracted.

We would recommend In The Night Garden Live, again and again, to anyone who has age appropriate children. If you have a child who loves to watch the antics of Iggle Piggle and his friends on the television, then you have a child who would totally adore this show!

In addition to the show itself, visitors can enhance the whole experience for their little ones by booking one of these ...

... a private Meet & Greet with either Upsy Daisy or Iggle Piggle! Each Meet & Greet comes with a photograph in a special story wallet to keep forever! Beastie hugged and danced with Upsy Daisy, and this truly did make many dreams come true for her!

Finally, I would also like to add some comments about the day from a parent or carer's point of view. The staff, from the person greeting you as you approach to the person thanking you as you leave, are all friendly, welcoming and extremely helpful. They are there, ready to answer your questions and concerns and are happy to run around for you if you need them to! They really are a lovely bunch of people who again, clearly enjoy the job they are doing, which creates a very happy atmosphere. 

Also, the bathrooms and baby changing areas are perfectly equipped. With essentials for nappy changing provided if required. There were smaller sized facilities for the children and steps to allow them to reach the sinks and toilets easily. The sink taps were also restricted with ties to prevent them from being turned up full, left running or being turned to hot. I thought this was a very thoughtful idea!

Thanks again to everyone involved in making our third visit to In The Night Garden Live just as magical as our previous experiences!

Ticket information for the remaining performances can be found at http://www.nightgardenlive.com/

You can also keep up to date with all of the latest news, announcements, competitions and offers by following In The Night Garden Live on Facebook and Twitter.

We were given complimentary tickets for this show for the purpose of this review. No other payment was made and all thoughts and opinions are 100% our own.

This review has been linked to:
Family Fever

1 comment:

  1. Oh look at their little faces, this would be magical for ITNG fans! Thanks for linking up with #TriedTested