On a Wednesday morning at St. Jude’s Community Hall in Queen’s Park the eclectic theatre company Wonderful Beast assembled to give the local under-3 year olds a performance to remember. Wonderful Beast are a theatre company who strive to keep the art of storytelling alive, and their unique brand of immersive, interactive children’s theatre has toured the UK and India.
Orla and The Sun is a story about a girl named Orla who wakes up from a sleep to discover the things she sees around her - a cat, a fish, a bee and a tree. All the while the yellow Sun follows her and the pair play, dance and sing accompanied by a live band who use multiple instruments such as singing bowls, maracas, a guitar and a glockenspiel. The costume and set design provide a colourful backdrop to the magical tale of Orla and The Sun, and the performers take the audience on a mesmerising journey. The children – and also the parents and carers – were captivated by the whole show.
Parents' / carers' audience feedback from the event:
I liked all of it. The energy as well, it was really nice and calming and relaxing and therapeutic.
I brought my grandson and I loved the interaction, I loved the way they encouraged the children to participate. He’s 18 months and he was captured. Brilliant I really enjoyed it.
I liked all of it. I thought it was fantastic. My little girl she’s not often a joiner-inner but what I loved about it was that she just sort of spontaneously got up and got involved and started playing with different things. It was just brilliant, really lovely, really joyous, and beautifully put together, really professional and slick and smooth.
Really different and it felt therapeutic and the singing was beautiful. The singing was marvellous; it was really intriguing and you could see the children were interacting and some of them were really engaged in it. I think it was brilliant.
I liked everything. Music, dancing, movement, the little items. I think he liked the silver leaves best - and the fact that it was animals, which he’s a big fan of.
Orla and The Sun is created by Zoe Palmer (pictured below, also a Creative Futures artist) and Jack Ross.
The performance was delivered as part of Music For Change and Queen’s Park Families projects with funding from Youth Music, John Lyon’s Charity, A New Direction, and Queen's Park Community Council.