Who are the real stars of this fantastic show? Young Lilly has oodles of lines to learn and performs brilliantly. Her mum, dad, gran and whole cast put on an amazing show. Life-size puppets are magnificent. Puppeteers, who bring to life Oona the elephant, a roaring tiger, snapping crocodile, and rowdy gang of orangutangs are, for me, the stars of the show. The puppeteers are awesome. It takes 4 to operate Oona. Her ears flap and her trunk moves like that of a real elephant; she snorts and trumpets (from both ends!); her tiny eyes sparkle. The croc lurks in the swamp and snaps at Lilly’s ankles; the tiger slinks across the stage, stalking Oona; a family of orangutangs, inquisitive, playful, hang from trees, scamper across the stage, and make authentic orangutang noises. The sound, lighting, props all add up to Running Wild being a visual feast with twists and turns, hilarious bits, scary bits, nasty bits, and an underlying ecological message. Maybe a bit deep and dark for under-8s?
It was a remarkable performance. I was glad to have had plenty of space around me so I could snivel into my tissues without anyone noticing. On leaving, I did notice the lady behind me had red eyes!
As with all theatre performances, taking photos isn’t allowed. But I managed a pic before the show began – to set the scene for what was to follow.