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Review of Kika’s Birthday at Little Angel Theatre

Kika's Birthday by Little Angel Theatre - Credit Richard Davenport
Kika’s Birthday by Little Angel Theatre – Credit Richard Davenport

Danyah Miller loves performing and storytelling. This was absolutely obvious when I watched Kika’s Birthday at the Little Angel Theatre with my six-year-old boy.

A story about Kika, a little French mouse, who is going to be 5 years old! Her family has planned a birthday surprise.

The decorated theatre was suitable to grab the attention of the young children in the audience. Where should the children look, at the bunting that dangles from the ceiling and walls, or at the colourful balloons, or the fairy lights. The set was very simple, picnic baskets, a stool and an oven… yes a real oven to bake a real cake. How exciting, yum! And the storytelling had not yet begun.

It is Kika’s birthday and of course, a cake must be baked, and as this was an interactive production, the children helped make the cake by shouting out the ingredients. ‘She used a real egg, she is making a real cake’ my little boy tells full of excitement. Danyah really welcomed and engaged all the children in the audience, even the shy ones got involved. There were lots more fun engaging moments, like the spontaneous clapping to music, some children merrily danced and an interactive game.

There were a few songs and they were beautiful simple songs with lyrics that were suitable for the targeted audience. The puppetry was equally simple, a mouse in a bag of flour and another in a bag of sugar. Orange gloves and a sieve represented a Bright Orange Cat, oh no… what does the Bright Orange Cat do? It certainly did not eat the mice.

This was storytelling at its best, a perfect mix of different types of engagement that brought the shy kids out of their shells and held the audience’s attention. The lovely aroma of chocolate cake with a dash of orange juice filled the auditorium – the children each received a slice of Kika’s Birthday Cake when they left the auditorium at the end of the show.

4 stars

Review by Shaidi Ramsurrun

Kika, a little French mouse, is going to be 5 years old! Her family has planned a birthday surprise, with friends, songs and a grasshopper band. But who is that with his twitchy tail and shining eyes watching them closely? It’s the Bright Orange Cat. Will he join the party, make some new friends and share some birthday cake, or does he have something else in mind?

A delightful interactive story with puppetry, by award-winning storyteller Danyah Miller, for children age 3-8 and their families. Come and help this family of mice bake a special birthday cake for Kika and maybe you can have a tiny piece.

CREDITS:
Performed by Danyah Miller / Marie Fortune
Directed by Samantha Lane
Designed by Alison Alexander
Music & Lyrics by Mary Erskine and Will Dollard
Lighting Designer Chris McDonnell
Movement Director Jennifer Jackson
Production & Stage Manager Matt Llewellyn Smith
Illustrations by Fiona Macpherson
Photography by Richard Davenport

Kika’s Birthday
Written by John and Danyah Miller
Performed by Danyah Miller / Marie Fortune
A Little Angel Theatre, Wizard Presents and Orange Tree Theatre co-production
For age 3 – 8
25 April – 20 May 2018
Running Time: 50 minutes
Little Angel Theatre
14 Dagmar Passage, N1 2DN
www.littleangeltheatre.com

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