Wednesday 14 August 2019

Culturebaby Reviews: Aesop's Fables at the Unicorn Theatre

7 year old Culturebaby is now starting to review her own events, and frankly what could be more satisfying than hearing directly from her? 

"Aesop’s Fables was great, I saw it at the Unicorn Theatre. This theatre is just for children. 

The show we saw is first about mums trying to get on but they are being competitive, while the children are just playing. [Think - clever version of the Tortoise and the Hare].

The second part of this fable is the story about dogs and wolves talking about being free, or being a pet but like a slave. I would rather be the wolf because he was a little bit hungry but he was free. 

Next I saw the story about a child called Frankie and a white crow. This story means that it doesn’t matter what you look like, but it matters if you’re kind and you have love. 

Finally the last story is about not being greedy otherwise you’ll throw up, or saving cake too long till it gets mouldy. 

My favourite story was Frankie and the white crow because it really teaches us a lesson, because it doesn’t matter what you look like, it matters if you have love. The white crow’s brothers and sisters wanted him to be gone and killed, and nobody else wanted to play with Frankie. The little girl called Frankie was sad because she was very different - nobody wanted a play date with her or to play with her, because her hair was different and she kept 'pooking' in public. But at the end all of them made friends and everybody was nice to everyone else.

People should come in and see the performance because it’s all about how are you should live your lives, about being kind, not being jealous or mean and you should respect people's rights and don’t be mean to them because they’re different. 

The setting was great because they have these boxes and they open them up and there was a special button and if you press it, it would change the story to a different one. 

The story is for ages 4 to7, but there is also another production for people over eight years old.

Aesop was a slave and a storyteller who lived in the land of Ancient Greece. He wrote 725 stories and fables."

Culturegirl, a recent five-and three quarters ish re-brand from Culturetot ("I'm not a baby mummy!") also wanted to add her rather more entertainment-oriented reflections:

"There was this type of button that you press, and when you press it, it changes into different parts of the story. My favourite part of the story was all of it. I liked the Wolfie one because it was funny. I would be the wolf because it is free. The cake one was good because if you eat it too quickly you get sick, and if you bury it for a long long time it looks like witch cake. People should come and see the show because it is funny."

So there we have it. Rave reviews. It was also worth adding that the theatre, as always, was massively welcoming and it was great to see a diversity in their staff, with their seeming deliberate recruitment approach in this area. Culturebaby sat down and had a good chat with one of the theatre stewards about how he could relate directly to her analysis of the tale of Frankie and the White Crow. It was a touching and mutually upbuilding moment.

The Unicorn notes: "We considered doing all 725 fables and then thought better of it. What we’ve done instead is asked a few of our favourite writers to select one fable and to re-tell it for today’s audience. We’re presenting two versions of the results: one for ages 4-7 and one for ages 8-12. This is a celebration of young and old, ancient and new – a tribute to how fresh, bold and vibrant the classics remain today."

While we ended up seeing this performance later on in its run, we hope this show might return. We've loved everything we have seen at the Unicorn and you can see all their future programming here.

The images included in this post are courtesy of the Unicorn Theatre and Guy Rhys, Craig Sugden, Jessica Hayles, Rosie Wyatt, Jessica Hayles, Nathaniel Wade, Jessica Hayles and Shazia Nicholls respectively.

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