Entertaining and evocative puppet drama about a lost dog during WWII
Bearing more than a few resemblances to a very successful play about a horse during wartime, Ingo's War is nonetheless a very engaging family show blending puppetry with spoken word to tell the story of a nervous dog that loses its owner and winds up in France as WWII rages on. Young theatre company Ditto bring the show to Edinburgh fresh from winning awards at Brighton Fringe Festival earlier this year.
Each of the six versatile actors / puppeteers bring a bright energy to the story, as they clearly narrate the action from a script that is explanatory but still manages to avoid getting too bogged down in specifics. A sparse set (stacks of crates and suitcases) is creatively utilised and matched with minimal sound effects throughout to keep the audience up to speed with the shifting narrative.
Ingo himself is a simple creation, but the ensemble bring the pup to life in a way that will capture children's imagination, with each of them taking turns to move his wooden paws and sound his yelps. Although both the narrative and choice of storytelling may not be the most original, it is a simple tale with a timeless quality that will be an easy sell for a family audience.
Pleasance Dome, until 20 Aug (not 14), 10.40am, £7.50--£9 (£6.50--£8).