Little Howard returns to the Edinburgh Fringe with his Big Show for Kids

This article is from 2013

Little Howard’s Big Show for Kids

credit: Steve Ullathorne

Howard Read combines toilet humour and tech to great effect

The old showbiz chestnut about not working with animals and children might still hold good, but there’s no rule against using material that kids inadvertently offer grown-up entertainers.

In Howard Read’s case, his son Sammy provided some lines that are being used verbatim in Little Howard’s Big Show For Kids. ‘My office is above our toilet and I heard him shouting down to my wife: “Mummy, there’s a slug in the toilet and I’m worried that he’ll drown because he hasn’t got any arms or legs!” People slowly work out that you’re talking about a poo. Solid gold. Literally.’

Anyone who has witnessed a show with Little Howard (essentially an animated six-year-old boy based on his creator at that age) will know that technology is core to the project. A seasoned hand by now, Read has plenty of tricks up his sleeve in the unlikely event that a computer malfunction occurs.

‘Generally, if it goes wrong it’s because I’ve stepped on the wrong clicker or I’ve left a controller on the other side of the stage. But I have many fail-safes – I can improvise or play the ukulele.’

Underbelly, Bristo Square, 0844 545 8252, 3–26 Aug (not 12), 2.45pm, £10–£12 (£9–£10). Previews 31 Jul–2 Aug, £6.

Little Howard's Big Show for Kids

Real human Big Howard and interactive animation Little Howard are putting on the show of their lives.