Saturday, 20 February 2016

Review: We're Going on a Bear Hunt Live



On Friday, I took Ebony to see We’re Going on a Bear Hunt at The Lowry. I try to take her to the theatre every couple of months because there are few things in life more pleasing than a trip to the theatre. More often than not we end up at The Lowry simply because they have an impressive array of family shows on throughout the year.

I booked the tickets to see We’re Going on a Bear Hunt after a friend recommended it on Twitter. I never need much convincing when it comes to buying theatre tickets, even if my bank balance would really rather I abstained.

It was the last day of half term and I wanted it to be special, so we were planning to head into Manchester for a bit first. We went straight to V Revolution for a vegan milkshake. We both decided on chocolate although I think maybe it was a bit rich for Ebony, she only drank half before announcing it was ‘too garlicky’. Obviously, it didn’t taste of garlic, but Ebony has a limited vocabulary when it comes to adjectives. We also got a slice of vegan cheesecake which I think must have been Ebony’s first ever cheesecake so she was pretty pleased with that though just about managed to save some for Laurie when he came to meet us.

We were then meant to head to go falafel (another of Manchester’s fine vegan eateries) to buy some takeout falafel wraps for lunch, but instead, we gravitated towards H&M. I wanted maternity wear and Ebony was hoping for “something cute in the sale” because she is a character in an American teen movie. This took longer than expected and we ran out of time for falafel, we had to jump on a tram straight to The Lowry. We got there just in time for Ebony to wash all of the tram window gunk off her hands before the show (why, Manchester, why are your tram windows so filthy?).

We had front row seats so had a good view of the performance, Ebony is finally big enough that sitting at the front doesn’t obscure her view (damn stage). We’re Going on a Bear Hunt is a favourite story of ours, so we were both excited to see it come to life on stage. I have fond memories of my dad reading the book to me when I was little, too. The show was absolutely amazing, definitely one of the best pieces of family theatre we’ve seen.

The cast was fantastic, really engaging and fun, and Ebony was completely transfixed the whole way through. There were plenty of catchy songs, some audience participation and plenty of different activities happening on stage. The format was really creative, with each part of the story being shown in a different way. There was a water fight, plenty of messy paint fun and loads of imaginative props.  

Sometimes, children’s shows can be a little samey, and children can get bored, but this wasn’t the case with Going on a Bear Hunt. It was action-packed from start to finish, it had Ebony laughing out loud and just a little bit angry (she doesn’t like to get wet, it turns out). It was a really fun show to watch and definitely inspired me to want to take Ebony on a bear hunt in the woods one day soon.

The Lowry will host the two final performances of the show tomorrow (you can book tickets on The Lowry’s website). If you mist is there, you can still catch it on its UK tour later this year (find venues and dates here).

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