The South African version of Tall Stories’ West End hit, The Gruffalo, will play at the Port Alfred High School Hall from 11 to 23 December 2016. For a special holiday treat, join Mouse on a daring adventure through the deep, dark wood in the magical, musical adaptation of the classic picture book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler.
The production’s catchy songs, lively storytelling, energy and interactive enthusiasm charmed audiences in their sold-out season at the Cape Town Fringe, where The Gruffalo was the biggest grossing production, selling out 6 of its 11 performances. The same team will bring the much-loved children’s tale to Port Alfred and Port Elizabeth during the 2016 holiday season.
Ayanda Nondlwana, Nombasa Ngoqo, Sisonke Yafele and Mandisi Heshu are directed by Tara Notcutt in a production that boasts a uniquely South African flavour. Artistic Director of UK-based Tall Stories, Olivia Jacobs, attended several performances in Cape Town and was thrilled with the artistic integrity of the production and the spontaneously warm reaction it provoked while thecritter.co.za wrote of the “screeches of joy” from the Cape Town audience.
Audience participation, ingenious comedic work by the narrator, and carefully spaced rhymes and bouncy songs keep busy young minds focused, while the rest of the family enjoy the energy and fun of children’s theatre.Overheard in Cape Town, “Yoh, the Gruffalo is BIG” (Troy, 5); “The best bit was the snake – when can we go again?” (Kali, 3); and in the press, “the kids had a marvelous time – with many varied responses (such as the kid who called out all the lines and one who daintily and deliberately went through her packed lunch) drawing smiles from adults, who sang and clapped along with gusto” – Steve Kretzmann, The Critter; “The Gruffalo is selling out faster than you can say ‘nut map’! Delighting audiences of all ages, it is a pleasure to behold… an enchanting production, powered by the energy of kidlet-giggles that ripple through the room, as they respond to the characters on stage” – Barbara Loots, Theatre Scene Cape Town.
The production is most suitable for children aged 3 to 10 and their grown-ups – tickets are crazy cheap at R60 per person with a R5 discount for children, grannies and granddads, and for bookings of 10 or more seats. For more information call 046 603 1103. To book, visit www.gruffalolive.co.za. Telephone bookings (081 321 3574) can only be made from Monday 21 November until 10 December after which tickets, if still available, may only be purchased online or at the venue from two hours before performances. Dates for performances in Port Elizabeth in January 2017 will be announced shortly.
ABOUT TALL STORIES AND THE WEST END PRODUCTION:
“An Absolute Delight” The Scotsman
“This show achieves exactly what it sets out to do and fully deserves the appreciation of reviewers, whether aged eight or eighty” British Theatre
“Keeps the children spellbound and is hard to fault” Radio Times
Tall Stories was founded in 1997 by co-directors Olivia Jacobs and Toby Mitchell. The company brings great stories to life for audiences of all ages. Tall Stories is a registered charity which tours the UK and the world with its exciting blend of storytelling theatre, original music and lots of laughs. www.tallstories.org.uk
Online booking for The Gruffalo will open on 21 November 2016 at www.gruffalolive.co.za