The Tiger Who Came to Tea: Review

There is a postmodern frame to this theatrical telling of Judith Kerr’s famous 1968 picture-book. In this adaption by David Wood the players tell us they are going to put on a play, and they enlist the audience’s help in setting off on their journey. The story is true to the original, but there are some embellishments to fill the world out and add some humour: Dad is late for work, for example, while the milkman has a lot more than milk concealed in his basket.

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The Tiger’s first appearance is made by way of peekaboo, and kids will have great fun pretending they are at the panto: “he’s behind you!” There are some wonderful feats of theatrical trickery too. The Tiger’s ability to swallow platefuls of food will have children and adult’s alike wondering about the stage magic.

David Wood’s music and lyrics are on the basic side, but the cast encourage participation from the young audience and this definitely helps with their engagement. Just as restlessness sets in, they are invited to stand and do some Tiger Aerobics, while the final scene is a five-minute long singalong about sausages, chips and ice-cream. Guess what my pair wanted for dinner?

Fans of the book will not be disappointed. There are two shows tomorrow in at the Pavilion Theatre, Dún Laoghaire; Then 8th/9th November, Town Hall Theatre, Galway; 10th/11th November, Cork Opera House.

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