From Brighton to Broadway, puppet shows have always been a popular choice of family entertainment. But the art of puppetry has come a long way from Judy chasing Punch with a rolling pin.
The Little Angel Theatre, one of London’s best-loved puppet theatres, holds regular shows and workshops ranging from baby-friendly to adults only.
My first taste of the Little Angel Theatre was a touring production of Handa’s Surprise at our local Sure Start children’s centre.
Two performers acted out the fruity fable using colourful puppets and props that enchanted the audience of parents, babies and pre-schoolers.
Then I was lucky enough to accompany my three-year-old’s nursery class to the actual theatre on Dagmar Passage, N1, to watch Splish Splash, a whimsical tale of a fish out of water.
The slick-handed puppeteers, clever and comic narration, vibrant set and innovative puppets all made for a magical experience. Ezra sat in front with his school buddies while I stayed in the back row with Jed, then 10 months, who watched the entire show barely making a sound. We were all entranced.
For a first theatre experience that will delight both young ones and grown-ups, I can’t recommend the Little Angel enough. They also do regular puppet making and craft workshops for people of all ages.
Coming up at Little Angel: The Fabulous Flutterbys, a lyrical adventure following two very different caterpillars with music by jazz legend Barb Jungr. The show runs from May 1 to July 4 and is suitable for ages 3+ (there are baby-friendly performances on Sunday mornings).
Little Angel Theatre is at 14 Dagmar Passage, N1. Visit their web site for further info.