Adam has always been a huge fan of Julia Donaldson stories. The Gruffalo has been a particular favourite. It was the first story he could retell all the way through independently from a young age. As a teacher, The Gruffalo was always a firm favourite with each of my classes and I have fond memories of taking the school to watch the theatre version. Unfortunately, Adam was only a few months old when the theatre production visited our city again. Over the years we have take Adam to see Room On A Broom and Gruffalo’s Child at the theatre but never The Gruffalo.
We were therefore over the moon when asked to review The Gruffalo in the West End! We happened to be in London that weekend for our London Adventure and we were able to go to the Sunday morning production. What better show to see as Adam’s first West End experience than The Gruffalo!
The Lyric Theatre is a compact theatre and a great venue for little ones. It felt like wherever you sat you were close to the action. The children were given a Gruffalo sticker and a small show leaflet as we entered the theatre. I was a little disappointed that we couldn’t buy a souvenir brochure and that they didn’t stock any Gruffalo merchandise. We did manage to buy a Gruffalo Activity Book. However, this did save on the cost of the experience.
As we entered the theatre we could see the wood scene on stage. The set had stayed true to Axel Scheffler’s style. From the moment the music started, Adam was captivated. I don’t think he moved a muscle during the entire 55 minute show.
Although we had felt disappointed by the Room On The Broom theatre adaptation, we loved Tall Stories version of The Gruffalo. We felt the show remained true to the story and loved how they developed the characters. After seeing The Gruffalo’s Child, we had expected the drill-sergeant Owl, the cheeky Fox and the hip-swinging, maraca-shaking Snake and were pleased that each character was portrayed in the same way.
The show entertained both Adam and us. There were several pantomime gags and some humour that went over the children’s heads. It was certainly a show to remember and one that we would highly recommend.
Image credit: Tall Stories
The Gruffalo will be at the Lyric Theatre on Shaftesbury Avenue from July until January 2017.
Disclaimer: We were given three tickets to watch The Gruffalo in order to review the show. All thoughts and opinions are our own.
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