It just isn’t Christmas without a little trip to the theatre, and I do love the Sherman. Bright, modern, friendly and welcoming it is somewhere I really look forward to going and I love taking the girls there. On Tuesday I was invited to the Press evening for The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe – their festive offering this year. Aimed at age 7+ I took Bean (8) with me and we enjoyed a big girl night out together.
The scenery was beautiful and simple and remained constant throughout. Stairs on the stage were very cleverly rotated and a magical backdrop made the transformation from the wardrobe in the spare room to Narnia very believable.
The play starts as the children are leaving for the country. It was emotional which meant that I was engaged from the very beginning. The cast had a veritable excitement and played the parts of children brilliantly. When Lucy made the first trip through the wardrobe into Narnia it was magical. Mr Tumnus has always been one of my favourite characters in the book and he certainly lived up to my imagination. Despite the lack of costumes as such for the animal characters, their manner of movement and expressions clearly gave away the fawn, the beavers and of course Aslan the lion, which is quite extraordinary really.
Like other performances I have seen at the Sherman, this one didn’t disappoint for variety. The actors were very accomplished musicians too and they sang and played instruments on stage which added significantly to the experience. I think for Bean to watch the violin being played in a dramatic fashion was brilliant and I hope will really inspire her.
The play is naturally quite dark and I was a little concerned that Bean may get upset at times. I kept a close eye on her and she wasn’t fazed in the slightest. She was enthralled! In fact there were several children I saw who were much younger than 7 and I noticed that all of them were really engrossed in the performance.
What I particularly liked about it was the manner in which the director, Rachel O’Riordan brings to life C.S Lewis’s ‘story behind the story’. I’ve always been fascinated with the Christian backdrop to The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe and this was the first performance I had seen in which I could really relate to that part. For me, that made this the perfect Christmas play and I’d say get yourselves over there to experience the magic for yourselves.
The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe is showing until December 31st. You can book tickets here. If you have a younger child you may also be interested in their other festive youth offering – The Princess and the Pea which is showing until the 2nd January 2016.
Disclosure – I was given two tickets to this show for the purpose of this review. All opinions are honest and my own.