The Girl With No Heart
Children's storybook on loss of innocence fails to come to life
This article is from 2012.
The Girl with No Heart is based on a short story book written by performer Louisa Ashton. A children’s parable about the loss of innocence, Sparkle and Dark’s Travelling Players use puppetry, silhouettes and origami to narrate the tale of a girl who journeys to a white-washed barren place full of ash where she meets a strange boy named Ike. With a paper set, white costumes and paper-based puppets, the production aims to literally bring the book to life.
The young company experiments with inventive and quirky visuals to achieve some lovely moments – a fluttering downpour of confetti, a cheeky origami lizard – though some props fail to dazzle. Similarly Ike, performed by two actors and a puppet, is at times winningly lifelike, particularly when he’s being stroppy, while at others the actors are distracting. A story needs more than paper and words to really take flight and, though sweet, The Girl with No Heart doesn’t quite reach the levels of enchantment for which it strives.
Bedlam Theatre, 225 9893, until 25 Aug (not 13), 5pm, £8 (£6).