The Hi-Jinks Festival was in full swing at the weekend. The Hertford Theatre was buzzing, decorated with with bunting and balloons, there was free face painting, a pop-up bookshop and activities to do at the Hertford Museum Pop-Up. Everywhere you looked there was something to do, or something to see. We’d been invited to see the Glastonbabies performance of Gardener Jack and the Green Beanstalk, an interactive show for 2 to 6 year old children and their families.
The one man show was filled with songs and music that kept the young audience’s wide eyes fixed on the action. In this interactive re-telling of Jack and the Beanstalk the story came alive and as one song ended, another began. Mr 2 was utterly captivated and was grooving, shaking, singing and dancing at every opportunity.
From the moment that the show began we were all drawn into the performance. The children were given shakers to pick up the beat and then buckets to drum on. The audience became an orchestra in the first five minutes of the show! We met Jack, the keen gardener. He met Groovy Man at the market, who persuaded Jack to trade Daisy The Cow for 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 magic beans that come alive! When Jack returned home his mum was devastated and she threw the beans away. Then, overnight there was a rainstorm. All the children were handed a beater and could join in creating the sounds of the rain on a range of plastic pipes. During this tubular symphony the storyteller played his saxophone, lights flashed and Mr 2 beamed.
Then there was a snowstorm and the children burst with excitement as a snow machine covered them in a flurry of white snow! Before we could take a breath we were climbing the beanstalk through the clouds. The children (and adults) were all immersed in the story, following Jack and creeping around the castle, so we didn’t wake the giant. In this gentle re-telling the giant stays asleep and Jack finds the goose that lays bags of shaky colourful eggs for the children to play with! There’s no ‘fee-fi-fo-fum’ or scary giants in this production aimed at children 2-6 years old.
Then, as the saxophone played, the children could freestyle and either play with the eggs, meet Daisy the cow, explore the stage and decorate the castle with caterpillars, play the drums, build towers with the shakers or dance to the music. The children really felt a part of the story and it was great to see so many smiling faces.
Mr 2 had an amazing time. The show is a fantastic, musical experience for all the family. We had a wonderful hour surrounded by live music and hands-on opportunities to make music and enjoy the creative, interactive storytelling.
Glastonbabies perform at festivals, events and also do party packages! You can find out more on the Glastonbabies website.
I received complimentary tickets to Glastonbabies: Gardener Jack and the Green Beanstalk in exchange for an honest review.