I have always loved going to the theatre, the excitement and the anticipation building as the lights dim and everyone goes quiet ready for the performance to start. When I got invited to go and watch the stage adaptation of Babe the Sheep – pig at Nuffield Southampton Theatre, I jumped at the chance. Babe is such a well known heart warming story and I couldn’t wait to share it with my toddler Jacob, as well as take him on his first trip to the theatre.
On Tuesday 30th June I went along with Jacob and my husband, and felt the familiar excitement as we settled into our seats with packets of sweets and our programs. The stage was already set with a sheep pen and an old barn set behind it. Before long 3 sheep came out on the stage, baa-ing playfully at the children in the front row which made for great entertainment and giggles by children and adults.
As the lights dimmed, the story of Babe began at the sheep dog trials. The set was beautifully done, simple but effective.
The Costumes looked great, and Jacob knew what every animal was meant to be, From Fly the sheep dog with her black and white strands of fabric forming the fur and tail, to the sheep with their thick woolly coats and big ears.
I knew Babe the pig was a Puppet in the performance but I was pleasantly surprised to find more farmyard animals were also puppets, including 3 puppies that moved so swiftly with their life like bounding and jumping about, it was very easy to forget they were puppets, alongside the puppies there were also ducks which have wheels to move around the stage, a cat and a big mother ewe. They all blinked and spoke as though they were real, and Jacob was loving every second of it! His personal favourite of course was Babe! The puppetry in my opinion was absolutely magical!
The performance was full of dancing and original music that you couldn’t help but tap your foot along too, and some audience participation which I think is great when kids can get involved and feel part of the story.
Of course there were a few sad moments including a wolf coming on stage. The costume was great and with the dim lighting it created a tense atmosphere. Jacob understood the scene without being too frightened, so i think they performed it perfectly for family viewing.
The performance itself was roughly an hour and a half with a 20 minute interval which I think was a good amount of time to fit the whole story in without little ones getting squirmy in their chairs. Jacob has quite a short attention span but was captivated throughout the entire performance and is still chatting about how funny the sheep were and how much he loved the pig.
A totally heart warming and family friendly night of fun and music. I couldn’t recommend going to see Babe the sheep – pig enough! They are performing at Nuffield Southampton theatre until Sunday 4th of June but are also travelling the country until October this year. There is still plenty of time to book tickets for Southampton which you can find here at Nuffield Southampton Theatre with afternoon and evening times available. Perfect for a trip out over half term, and even if you don’t have children you wont regret this beautifully fun filled production!
Lots of Love, Liz
*Photographs are not my own and kindly have been allowed to use them.
*Thoughts and opinions are all my own, however the tickets were kindly gifted to me!