It doesn't feel like Christmas until I have been to The Rose Theatre in Kingston. Every year they put on an amazing Christmas show, and they never let me down. I wasn't sure if they were going to be able to top last year's A Christmas Carol, especially as this year they chose a play you wouldn't expect to be on for Christmas. This winter sees the much-beloved book, The Wind in the Willows, brought to life.
I won't keep you in suspense - The Wind in the Willows was utterly mesmerising. Mole is lonely and abandons his life of cleaning and doing mole things. He goes in search of adventure, and meets Ratty, who gives Mole a boat ride and their adventure begins. The staging was simple but effectively conveyed the areas of the river and Toad Hall. They even manage a ride-able motorcar for Toad, who is fond of wild joyrides.
The show itself was full of songs, escapades and then finished with an exciting battle at the end. It was so much fun to see how much the children enjoyed the show. They laughed and gasped and cheered. But to be honest, the kids weren't the only ones who loved the show. Ciaran McConville adapted and directed The Wind in the Willows, and it is clear that he has a firm understanding of entertaining children and adults alike.
If you live in/near Kingston-upon-Thames, you must try and see The Wind in the Willows. It will be playing at The Rose Theatre Kingston until Tuesday, 3rd January 2017. There are shows on twice a day, most days. The show lasts for almost two hours, including a 20-minute interval. Book here for tickets for a magical family production.
Photo credit: all photos of the show by Mark Douet
We were invited to the show for the purpose of this review. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.