Friday, March 13, 2015

I Theatre's Aesop's Fables Review

"Short, straight to the point yet punchy" would be the words I would use to describe this 50 minutes production. I Theatre has woven in not 1, not 2 but 8 fables in this production. Narrated and acted out by 5 friends (Diggle, Gander, Moleskin, Crowfoot and Lambkin) who are part of the Crowfoot Troupe, the audience is brought through a fast-paced and humourous journey.

With a history of more than 2000 years, many of us grew up listening to Aesop's Fables where each and every single one has a precious lesson and value to tell.

In this play, some of the fables are old favorites while others, are lesser known. Starting with 'The Miller, His Son and Their Donkey', we learn the lesson that there's no pleasing of everyone. In the story of 'The Goose that Laid the Golden Eggs', we learn that greed can amount to great loss and it is always wise to think before we act. These values are verbalized by the actors after every fable.

With the rest of the fables spanning from the well-loved The Fox and the Crow to Androcles and the Lion, children are taught important moral values one story after another in a speedy pace.

The band of quirky 'creatures' bring these fables to 'live' where these skilled actors (familiar faces from some earlier I Theatre's productions - Ant and the Grasshopper, The Little Red Hen, Grimm's Fairy Tales, etc.) slipped effortlessly from one role into another, taking on the many personas in the fables.

Dumpling's favorite character is Moleskin who kept losing (and looking for) her cheese and who was also very believable as the mouse in The Lion and The Mouse.

The music is catchy and props are kept simple and imaginative - big, bright and colorful oriental fans which make up the Peacocks' tails while masks and headgears are used, sometimes with humorous effects. (Check out crow below :p)

There were many other funny moments such as those in The Fox and the Crow where the crafty fox heaped outlandish praise on the crow (which had Dumpling cackling away) and when onions were used as goose eggs for the substitution of props.

In its signature style, I Theatre engaged its audiences by inviting ground participation. 2 volunteers were chosen to help with the re-enactment of The Sun and the North Wind. Now, Dumpling watched this play a second time (YES!) recently with her school and regaled me with tales about how her classmate was chosen and had great fun on stage. :)

As compared with the previous programme booklets for its previous plays, I have to say that I Theatre has upped their game this round with the Aesop's Fables booklet.

The design spots clean lines and a simple layout which made it really easy to read. Best of all, the booklet also includes 2 pages of activity fun (4 activities in total) contributed by Little Day Out where they are related to the fables. 

All in all, it was a 50 mins well spent at the theatre. :)

About Aesop’s Fables
Date:                             26 February to 21 March 2015
Venue:                                 Jubilee Hall, Raffles Hotel
Recommended for:     3 to 13 year olds and families
Duration:                     50 minutes with no interval
Script & Lyrics: Brian Seward 
Music Arranged and Directed by: Bang Wenfu

You can purchase your tickets from Sistic here

Disclaimer: We were invited to watch the production and give our opinions of it. We were not compensated for the post. All opinions expressed are entirely ours.

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