Do you know what an ‘ear-worm’ is? It’s a catchy piece of music that continually repeats through your mind, long after the song in question has stopped playing. Much like La…la…la-la-la-la…la…la-la-la-la!
That’s right. Smurfs. The boys (and girl) in blue – or more accurately, of blue – and now, a stage production, and the cause of my lasting, but not entirely unpleasant, ear-worm.
What it’s about
It’s spring, the Smurfs’ favourite time of year, and eight members of the tribe (Papa Smurf, Brainy, Hefty, Vanity, Harmony, Clumsy, Grouchy and Smurfette) are preparing for the annual Spring Parade.
There’s strong competition to be appointed Grand Blue-bah – the VIP of the Parade – but it’s an honour that Grouchy Smurf rejects right at the outset.
While the other Smurfs make merry, Gargamel comes up with a plan to trick Mother Nature into un-spring-ing spring, and bring an end to the festivities. What will happen? Will the Smurfs win the day? And who’ll be Grand Blue-bah, if there’s ever another Spring Parade?
What to expect
In The Smurfs Live on Stage you’ll encounter clever puppetry, effective lighting, vivid sets, and fun effects (the kids adored the snow and glitter).
I found the plush costumes of the ‘big’ Smurfs to be a bit restrictive in terms of both the actors’ movement and blocking, and my ability to suspend my own disbelief, so I was grateful for the two ‘human’ actors who portrayed Gargamel and Mother Nature. But the true audience, the kids, had no reservations.
This one was a hit, and Grouchy Smurf (with his consistent and hilarious ‘I-hate-everything!’ misanthropy) managed to steal the show completely. You and your kids will be La…la…la-la-la-la…la…la-la-la-la-ing all the way home.
The standout performer is Naledi-winning musical theatre performer Candida Mosoma, who brings perky pinkness and a lot of sassy style to Mother Nature. Her voice is something else, and her acting is seamless.
Did you know that the Smurfs were created in 1958 by Pierre Culliford, but became an animated cartoon series in 1980 (incidentally, the year before I was born)? It was both strange and cool to share with my 6-year-old a set of characters that I enjoyed when I was 6.
There are three 90-minute shows a day, Thursday to Sunday, til 30 July, so pick one of the earlier two (the late one is a bit late for littlies) and take kids aged 2 to 8.
The show details
The Smurfs Live on Stage ends 30 July. Tickets are available from R150 at Computicket or at the Emperors Palace Box Office; click here for more information.