The memories of my childhood are often filled with colours, or feelings. I imagine that my children’s memories of The Very Hungry Caterpillar live show will be a mixture of both.
Eric Carle’s most famous book was released in 1969, his distinctive style (collages of brightly coloured, hand painted tissue paper) is something that grandparents, parents and now their children can identify with. It’s been translated into 62 languages and has sold over 41 million copies.
In its incarnation as a live performance, The Very Hungry Caterpillar is presented on white canvas, with white clad actors. Eric Carle’s distinctive illustrations come to life through a riot of colourful silks, life size models of his animal creations, and of course… one very cute little caterpillar.
The show incorporates several of Carle’s most popular books including Brown Bear, Brown Bear What Do You See? (which Carle illustrated for Bill Martin Jr), Mister Seahorse and The Very Lonely Firefly.
It was the first time I’d taken my son (2.5 years old) to a live show, and while he didn’t sit down for the whole performance, he was never the less enraptured by the colour and movement. I imagine he felt the excitement of the live performance, that intangible magic that always appears when the lights start to dim, the crowd begins to hush and a new world is created live in front of you.
He clapped and cheered and looked delighted. It was definitely an experience that was great for both our kids (our daughter is 4.5) and it was just the right period of time (not too long, and not too short).
It was the perfect kind of story for little people, and I loved watching them both enjoy the experience.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show is playing in Sydney and Brisbane - visit its official website for dates and tickets.
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