“They’re so wriggly, they make me giggly and I want to do a wiggly dance” – there’s not many pets that you can say, or sing, this about but caterpillars fit the bill.
Which is probably a good thing as the larvae are a very good-sized pet for a guinea pig rather than the dog, cat or elephant alternatives Topsy Turvy Theatre sing about in one of the opening numbers of their show Christopher’s Caterpillars.
The minis enjoyed watching the cuddly cavy in the company’s adaptation of Charlotte Middleton’s original title, Christopher Nibble, at the Terry O’Toole Theatre last year.
We discovered and took home two further adventures of the eponymous hero for bedtime reading that afternoon so were delighted to discover they were bringing one of the sequels back to the North Hykeham theatre today.
This time Dandeville’s foremost dandelion-growing football player discovers some colourful crawlers in his herb garden and, along with his friend Posie, decides to adopt them.
With the help of cafe owner Mr Rosetti they learn how to care for them and, using some handy imaginary magnifying glasses, the audience gets to watch their progress too – until one day they disappear…
The pair then set out to solve the minibeast mystery, creating some beautiful artwork along the way.
It was no mystery to the very clever audience of course as it seems Luke isn’t the only one to have studied the life cycle of a butterfly at school but the young theatre-goers were persuaded to let the furry friends find out for themselves and their foreknowledge didn’t dampen their delight in the flight the curly charges took following their final transformation.
The gentle tale was interjected with fun, interactive songs that gave the children opportunities to get up and move and the only dampening of the audience came from the water sprays overshoot when Christopher’s friends were watering the plants, growing more excitable reactions. With the chance to meet the main guinea pig himself and shake him by the paw after the show there’s definitely a few more Nibble fans in Lincoln now.
Hopefully Topsy Turvy Theatre will be back next year with the recycling fun of Christopher’s Bicycle!
Find out more about the theatre’s children’s programme at http://terryotooletheatre.org.uk/childrens-theatre/
Looking for further caterpillar activity ideas? Click on #30DaysWild Day 8 – Who’s been eating these leaves?