We managed to snag some tickets for Charlie and Lola’s Best Bestest Play at The Southbank Centre this February half term as a part of the brilliant Imagine Children’s Festival. Raffy had never really watched or read Charlie and Lola before hand but is always up for a stage show, especially if we get to travel there by train.
Unfortunately on this occasion, we missed our train by about 3 seconds and the following train was delayed giving us only 8 minutes to get from the platform to the Southbank Centre. Heavy breathing aside, we got there just in time and were shown to our seats in the very plush Queen Elizabeth Hall just as the show was starting.
I was a little concerned that Raffy would struggle to sit through it as he prefers the more interactive shows, but this was captivating. The show was performed by four actors artfully manipulating the puppets and stage props throughout the story. What was brilliant about this puppet show was that they perfectly captured Lola’s wild imagination and we all became lost in a world of space rockets, butterflies and bath tub-hogging whales. This sweet and magical show is pitched perfectly for the target audience, but had enough little surprises to put a smile on everybody’s face.
Of all of the children’s stage shows I have seen to date, this was by far the best. To have an audience full of three year olds all sitting still and totally transfixed is no easy task and to be honest, I’m not sure I’d have believed it possible if I hadn’t seen it myself.
The show is aimed at ages 3+, but at just under 3, Raffy absolutely loved it and still bangs on about fixing Charlie’s broken space rocket now. This play has finished at The Southbank Centre now, but for more information on similar shows, click here.