Night of the Big Wind (3 stars)

This article is from 2012

Night of the Big Wind

Touching show set in an Irish fishing village, ambitiously told

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).

Street Dreams trailer

Night of the Big Wind

  • 3 stars

A fishing village in Ireland is hit by a terrifying storm. Beautiful puppetry and innovative props tell a tale of a young boy's battle against the weather. 'Impossible to fault' ★★★★★ ( 'Packed with visual invention' ★★★★ (Scotsman). Suitable for Ages 7+.

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