Wow! It’s Night Time at Little Angel Theatre, Islington
For a midwinter treat, the Little Angel Theatre’s latest puppet performance has plenty of charm to warm the cockles…
‘Wow! It’s Night-Time’, an adaptation of Tim Hopgood’s picture book, is perfect for 2-5 year olds. Not only is it full of beautiful puppetry and magical lighting, but is also a fidget-friendly 35 minutes long (apologies for making judgements on performance length but as any parent knows even the best shows fall down when they’re simply too long for small attention spans!).
Lizzie Wort – who wields an impressive CV covering numerous puppet shows, CBBC and even The Mighty Boosh – holds the whole show together with enough warmth and magnetism to keep children drawn in. As Lizzie investigates the world after dark, we are introduced to a roll call of nocturnal creatures, each with their own song and dance. Pinning the story together is Little Owl who discovers the wonders of night-time while all the while looking for the other little owls…
The set is simple but beautiful. Midnight blues create a perfect backdrop to intricately lit puppets that move like dancing lanterns. Don’t expect full-scale staging with all the whistles and bells – this is a delicate, perfectly-formed telling of a very simple picture book which delivers a gentle night safari tale.
The Little Angel Theatre itself is a real treat. Found on a quiet cobbled street, tucked behind the chic but bustling Upper Street in Islington, the theatre has been entrancing children and adults alike since 1961. This special company produce their own in-house productions, stage performances from visiting companies, and run puppet workshops for the public, schools and community groups.
Being accessible to all is important to the theatre and production runs always include relaxed performances – particularly for those who would benefit from a more relaxed environment or are uncomfortable with sudden noises or lighting changes, including those with an Autistic Spectrum Condition, sensory or communication needs, or a learning disability.
Naturally, as a community-focused arts organisation, fundraising helps them continue their accessibility work, artistic and outreach programmes so beyond simply supporting them as a ticket-buying punter, you can also become a member (£48/year Standard; £72/year Plus) and receive 25% discount on tickets, 10% off refreshments and merchandise, and other perks as a Plus Member.
Parents looking for weekly activities beyond seeing the shows should consider the Saturday Puppet Club for 5-7 year olds and 8-11 year olds. Craft-loving kids will get a chance to make their own puppets and put on a show at the end of each term. Spring term runs from 19th January until 30th March and costs £120 (£80 concessions). Littler ones from 4 months to 3 years can join the weekly Tiny Tots sessions full of music, singing and crafting fun. Spring term starts 17th January and costs £65 for one child and one accompanying adult.
‘Wow! It’s Night-Time’ runs until 27th January at Little Angel Theatre, 14 Dagmar Passage, London N1 2DN. Tickets are £13.50 (adults) and £11.50 (children and concessions).
For all performance times and dates, ticket booking, upcoming shows and full details of all workshops and weekly clubs visit www.littleangeltheatre.com or call 020 7226 1787.
*Photo credit Ellie Kurttz