Just before Christmas, we visited one of our favourite places in London: Discover Children’s Story Centre, in Stratford.
The reason for our trip was One Snowy Night. Discover’s Christmas production, based on the book by Nick Butterworth, is described by Lyn Gardner of the Guardian as a ‘beautifully pitched staging of the picture book’. One Snowy Night
Sally Goldsworthy’s production was aimed at 3-6 year olds and, after an introductory slapstick two-hander between Percy and Bob in the woods outside Percy’s cabin, the audience was ushered inside the parkkeeper’s wooden home. Unlike more adventurous interactive performances, the format of the main action was relatively traditional: children sitting at the front, on cushions, while adults perched on stool behind. All very safe, and cosy.
But then, the woodland creatures appeared. The curmudgeonly badger, cute rabbit twins, high-energy squirrel and predatory fox who kept sleepy Percy awake and took up all the space in his bed, were characterised in a way that added new depth and complexity to the picture book story. And the puppetry was cleverly done, adding convincing animation to creatures ranging in size from tiny mice to the big old badger.