Wednesday, 18 January 2017

Little Red at the Action Transport Theatre

What was your favourite fairytale as a child? I remember being captivated by the story of Little Red Riding Hood. "My, what big teeth you have" "All the better to eat you with". Ohh spine-chilling! 

So I was really excited to receive an invite* to see Action Transport Theatre's Little Red and the Big Bad Wolf. Having received rave reviews for its performance at Liverpool's Unity Theatre: 

"An atmospheric show which children cannot help but be drawn into"
Liverpool Arts Scene ★★★★★ (More here)

Little Red and the Bad Wolf was set to run for 5 shows at Action Transport Theatre. So I made a visit on Saturday, accompanied by two other adults and their two children. 

Action Transport Theatre, described by The Stage as "small but perfectly formed" is found in Whitby Park in Ellesmere Port, a park which I'm sure is beautiful when it's not pouring with rain like Saturday. I was greeted warmly at the door, had my name ticked off the list and then set about the nerve-wracking task of saving enough seats (it wasn't that bad I just felt incredibly British about it!) Children were able to sit on benches at the front of the stage, which was great because I remember years of craning my neck at shows to get the best possible view. 

Seats filled and lights down the incredibly energetic and flawless four-part cast took to the stage for an hour and twenty minutes of catchy, sitting around the campfire like songs, witty prose and engaging scenes. Throughout it all, the children around me were captivated, engaged and entertained - proved by one particular child who laughed very loudly, very frequently.  

Action Transport Theatre

Action Transport Theatre

The two children with me were even distracted by the popcorn I'd bought for them and those behind me stopped complaining that they were starving as soon as the enigmatic, big, bad wolf took to the stage.

Action Transport Theatre

Action Transport Theatre

I was quickly reminded this is not a 'pantomime' but a 'Christmas show' and while there was no boo hissing and 'oh yes it is' and 'he's behind you' there was plenty of audience participation and interaction. The size of Action Transport Theatre was perfect for ensuring any child who wanted to be involved in the wolf howling competition could be and the biscuits handed out at the end soon made their way into every sticky paw. 

Action Transport Theatre

Action Transport Theatre

Overall, Little Red and The Big Bad Wolf was the perfect antidote to a wet, windy Saturday evening. Light, warm and engaging throughout. Thank you to the amazing, energetic cast and to Action Transport Theatre. 

The fun doesn't stop there at Action Transport Theatre, although Little Red has now run its course, there are several shows lined up for 2017:

Weds 25th January - Beasty Baby
Sat 4th Feb - The Boy who Cried Wolf 
Sat 18th Feb - Monthly Family Film Club
Thu 30th March - The Writers Ball 

All I'm left wondering is, do I need a child to come along and isn't 2017 the year I finally get back to acting?

You can find out more about Action Transport Theatre on their website or their Facebook page

*I was given a complimentary ticket in exchange for an honest review  
**Photo credit: Brian Roberts

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