Night of the Big Wind
Touching show set in an Irish fishing village, ambitiously told
This article is from 2012.
Following last year’s hugely enjoyable Street Dreams, Canterbury-based Little Cauliflower Theatre Company return with more puppetry, physical theatre and clowning in this whimsical and sometimes dewy-eyed show set in an Irish fishing village. But here they take things up a gear, with a bigger set, more elaborate puppets and far more ambition in their storytelling.
It’s beautifully done: the performers’ puppetry skills are impressive, the tale is touching and the theatrical set-pieces -- especially the storm that engulfs the village, complete with thunder sheet and wind machine -- are thrillingly executed. A complex mechanical bird puppet, expertly manipulated by director William Aubrey-Jones, threatens to steal the show. Better still, there’s real engagement between the company and the audience, set up nicely in an amusing opening sequence where lanterns are handed out.
It’s a shame that in making the show so elaborate, some simple things have been lost. The narrative seems over-complicated and lacks a central focus, the characters are only roughly sketched, and it’s a bit hard to follow what’s happening in the show’s second half. But it still brings a lot of pleasure.
Underbelly Cowgate, 0844 545 8252, until 25 Aug, 1.15pm, £8.50--£10 (£7.50--£9).