Celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, the Snowman is a classic Christmas show which has been entertaining London’s children since Sadler’s Wells first brought it to the city in 1997 (the stage adaptation originated at the Contact Theatre in Manchester in 1986).
Birmingham Rep’s silent retelling of Raymond Briggs’s famous 1978 picture book is a great introduction to a dance show for kids, with some recognisable ballet on pointe shoes danced by a musical-box ballerina, alongside mime and physical theatre performed by costumed characters that include life-size fruit, penguins and of course snowmen. The show has aged well and provokes awe-inspired gasps from young theatregoers when the boy and the snowman “walk in the air”.
Alongside the flying, the other edge-of-the-seat moment is the arrival of Jack Frost, a role shared this year by Jack William Parry and Ryan Upton, who with his spiky costume and jerky movements, provides just the right amount of threat to keep the young audience engaged without scaring them. And of course infants and grown ups alike grin at the arrival of Santa.
If you are looking for a show to get you in the Christmas spirit, this has to be a top contender.
Until December 31 at the Peacock Theatre.
Howard Blake: Composer, Lyricist, Scenario Co-Creator and Joint Executive Producer
Robert North: Choreographer
Bill Alexander: Director
Ruari Murchison: Designer
Tim Mitchell: Lighting Designer
Richard Brooker: Sound Designer
Rossella Capriolo: Assistant Choreographer
Anita Griffin: Assistant Choreographer
Julian Moss: Assistant Choreographer
Darren Parish: Assistant Choreographer
Steve Socci: Orchestral Manager
Costas Fotopoulos: Musical Director / Piano