‘Very entertaining, joyful and funny’. Those are the words of my seven-year-old after going to see Tabby McTat’s live theatre show.
And I have to say I completely agree.
If you haven’t come across Tabby McTat before, it’s a charming and heart-warming tale of friendship between a busker and a cat by the superb Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler. The story is a firm favourite in our house, so when the stage version came to town I knew it would be the perfect school holiday entertainment.
I was also curious to see how the story would be transferred from the page to the stage, and we weren’t disappointed. So, if you’re thinking about going too, here’s what to expect and why I think it’s worth every penny!
10 reasons to see Tabby McTat’s live theatre show
1. It’s a great bribe. I told our three we were going a month in advance and the threat of not being allowed to go worked wonders on the behaviour front!
2. It’s a great first introduction to the theatre. We saw the show at the Theatre Royal Brighton which is more than 200 years old and one of the UK’s oldest working theatres. The kids loved learning all about it: the boxes, the velvet curtains and why the bell rings three times before each performance.
3. The show is designed for all ages – and it really is. As mum to a seven-year-old, a four-year-old and a two-year-old there’s not much that captures all of their attentions and imaginations at the same time, but this did.
4. There’s nothing like a play to bring a book to life. As already mentioned, I was intrigued to see how the story of Tabby McTat could be translated to the stage, and it’s very cleverly done. Without giving too much away, the theatre show stays true to the book with music, lights, special effects and brilliant casting.
5. The actors start off among the audience. Again, I don’t want to give too much away and spoil it for anyone who hasn’t been yet, but expect the unexpected!
6. The audience are encouraged to get involved. So there’s no need to worry about shushing the kids and keeping them silent for the entire performance.
7. It only lasts an hour. Long enough to tell the story in rich and absorbing detail, but not long enough for little bottoms to get bored.
8. It’s not just for kids. It’s for grown-ups too, and I defy anyone not to come out without a warm fuzzy feeling inside.
9. It’ll fire their imaginations. My three talked about the show and asked questions for days afterwards (like why the police don’t come when the thief pinches the busker’s hat, which to be fair is a jolly good point!)
10. It’ll tire them out. We might have been sitting down for an hour, but my three were exhausted afterwards – resulting in an unusually and surprisingly easy remainder of the afternoon. Just the job when you work from home and it’s the school holidays!
We were gifted tickets to Tabby McTat’s theatre show in exchange for this review. As always, all opinions are my own and based on our own honest experience. The show is touring the UK until December 2019 – for more information on dates and tickets click here.