We were lucky enough to be invited to see two Woody Wild shows free of charge at Bluestone, for the purpose of this review.
Lola’s Day in the Sun
The first show we saw was Lola’s Day in the Sun. The shows take the format of the host reading from a magic book. Because of the book’s magical powers, whenever somebody reads it, the story comes true. So when the short story ended, the children helped the host to call Lola onto the stage.
After a few attempts and some help from the grown-ups, Lola arrived to take the children on an adventure. The children were all sitting on beanbags in front of the stage, whilst there were chairs for the adults. Parents were welcome to sit with the children at the front too, but our two were more than happy to go off without me.The adventure took them through various scenes, where the beanbags were used to make a rock pool, build sand castles and even as an under-sea base. This was done with the assistance of the adults holding up a parachute with sea creatures on, and tranquil, blue lighting. I could see how much the children relaxed and enjoyed the feeling of being underwater.There was also plenty of dancing that the children were able to get involved in. I really liked how engaged they were with everything that was going on. I had worried a bit that they wouldn’t manage to sit still and concentrate as they were quite tired. As it was, there was absolutely no requirement to sit still, and they enjoyed every minute of it.At the end, they were able to have their photograph taken with Lola the Ladybird. Libby couldn’t wait to get up onto the stage, but Lia was a little bit more reluctant, preferring to wave to Lola from a distance.
Buzby Bumble Boogie
The second Woody Wild show we saw was Buzby Bumble Boogie. This took the same format as Lola’s Day in the Sun, with the host reading a story about Buzby Bee from the magic book. This time, the story was about the seasons – and rather aptly about the fact that the sun was lost and didn’t realise it was summer.
Again, when the story finished, it was time to call Buzby and the book came to life. The children were sitting on beanbags as with the other show, and it was just as interactive. There was plenty of dancing and singing, and this time the adventure revolved around a journey through the seasons, trying to find the sunshine.In Autumn, there were leaves scattered about for the children to gather up and hand in. Then in winter, the snowman threw balls out amongst the children, for them to gather them up and put them into a big container. This helped Buzby to get rid of winter and bring back the sunshine. In spring, there was a flower that hadn’t bloomed, so the children sang songs to it, watered it and called the sunshine to help it grow.
By the end of the show, the sunshine turned up and it was time for the children to have their photographs taken with Buzby. Libby was much more keen than Lia again, having a photo with Buzby whilst Lia waved from a safe distance.Sadly, when we left the real sunshine remained elusive, so this was the perfect way to keep the children entertained on a rainy day. I’d highly recommend these shows for anybody who is at Bluestone with pre-school aged children. It’s actually a great way to start getting them into real theatre.