Mirazozo (4 stars)

This article is from 2011.


Photography | Jason Nakrani

Inflatable world of fun and relaxation

‘Have we been in here yet?’ said the girl next to me to her friend. It’s an easy mistake to make, the rooms and corridors of Mirazozo are all similar but different and, like a maze, it’s hard to know where you’ve been and where you’re going.

This is absolutely not a complaint, however. The ease with which you walk through this vast inflatable, stopping to sit or lie down, lean against the walls or, as one toddler did, slide along on your bum, makes Mirazozo a genuine pleasure rather than a frustration.

The latest creation by Alan Parkinson of Nottingham-based company, Architects of Air, Mirazozo is filled with light in hues of green, red, blue and orange. Yet remarkably, none of it is generated by any kind of electrics. Even on grey, rainy days, of which there have been plenty this Festival, Mirozozo is still a luminarium of colour provided wholly by natural light. Ambient music appears to emanate from nowhere and each time somebody opens the door, the walls move as if breathing gently.

Mirozozo is in the Kids section of the Fringe programme, but of course it’s a haven for adults as well. And herein lies the only drawback. If you’ve headed inside the inflatable womb looking for some relaxed down-time, be prepared to share it with some very excitable toddlers who can’t believe their eyes, older children playing hide and seek, and staff trying to ensure nobody runs.

Most people (toddlers aside), however, do a bit of both – marvelling at the craftsmanship that has gone into this hand-stitched plastic, admiring the light, exploring each room and then laying back against the soft, yielding walls and enjoying a brief moment of calm in amongst all the Festival madness.

Assembly George Square, 623 3030, until 29 Aug, 9.30am-8pm, £5.


  • 4 stars

An awe-inspiring monument to the unexpected beauty of colour and light. Bring the family as the multi-sensory space welcomes and inspires. Take your map, remove your shoes, pass the airlock and wander freely through labyrinthine tunnels and cavernous domes or just lie back and enjoy the ambience. No two visits are alike.

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