I was so grateful how relaxed the vibe was when we arrived. The actors were there, chatting with the young audience, and they felt welcome from the start.
Trickery, teasing and taunting from the top through physical play aroused excitement from the young crowd who found joy in these silly but familiar games. And when the rhythm hit, the little ones were marking the time along with the performers, as they tried to emulate the simple yet sophisticated arrangements made up of only body parts, the ground, and -my eldest son’s (5 years old) most favourite tool – sticks.
Soon the song and dance emerged from this rhythm and I could not believe that such a richness could emanate from only these four actors on stage. The harmony and the complicity that they shared shone through not only between each other, but in the way they connected with the children throughout. They were performing for them, for us.
And then, after proposing infinite games with sticks, they handed a pair out to each of the little people, and the grown ups, and together we made rhythms. My 2.5 year old was on his feet with his two little sticks, full of joy to be invited to join in.
And if that wasn’t enough, finally the kids were invited onto the playing space to build stuff with the sticks and the actors animated scenes within the children’s creations before they rallied everyone with a song to tidy up. They closed the show with a final number, ending the journey with such satisfaction.
Knock Knock, who’s there? Children under 5 watching live theatre and seeing all that it can be.
(post by Lisa Marie DiLiberto)