Theatre review: The Snowman
I don't even know where to start with this show, calling it magical just isn't enough. It's enchanting, endearing, charming, sweet, uplifting...I could go on and on. We all know the story of the Raymond Briggs classic The Snowman, a short animation we all grew up with. An animation that doesn't need words, whose visuals and music say so much more than any dialogue could. We watch it every Christmas and it really is something for everyone. I was excited to see this show (understatement of the year), for me it was a story I grew up with and love but I was also so so so excited for the toddler to see it. Like our last theatre visit I was again a bit apprehensive, this time it was because the show is long. I wasn't sure she would last the 1hr 50 minutes with an interval but she did....just.
For those who are not familiar, The Snowman now in it's 19th year at The Peacock theatre, is set at Christmas and follows the story of a young boy and his magical snowman. We join them on their adventure that sees them get up too all sorts of mischief in the boys home, playing limbo with life size fruit (this was a big hit for the toddler), dancing with a ballerina and toy soldiers, riding on a motor bike, going to Lapland for a snowman party and of course meeting Father Christmas.
The costumes were amazing, not only that of the Snowman who looked so fluffy and cuddly but Jack Frost and the many magical woodland creatures that appear. There were actual gasps when the reindeer appeared with Father Christmas (maybe that was just me).
The walking in the air scene is all kinds of magical, I had to look at the little ones face at this point to see her reaction and the look of wonder on her face and of all the children's faces around us was really something special and probably the only time there was complete silence in the audience.
All in all, we both loved it and the little one has been talking about it ever since. She has since asked to watch the short film and has also changed her mind about what she wants Father Christmas to get her. She now wants a blue scarf like the boy! It used to be that Christmas wasn't complete without watching The Snowman on tv but it's safe to say that as of now, for us, Christmas isn't complete without a trip to see The Snowman at the theatre.
A few parent pointers:
1. There are no booster seats, so after looking around at what everyone else was doing we folded up my coat for the little one to sit on. The mum next to us had brought her own fold up booster seat with her, totally doing that next time.
2. While we're talking about seating.....the seats are heavy. Not something I've ever really paid attention to but when your toddler is suddenly being swallowed up by her seat, you soon pay attention! I spent the first half of the show with my leg holding her seat down. Then gave in to her sitting on my bag (as well as coat) to weigh the chair down!
3. There are lots of stairs.
4. One we all probably know already....BRING THE SNACKS.
5. *SPOILER ALERT* At the end of the show it snows. I wouldn't usually want to ruin that surprise for you....sorry. I only mention it as it only snows above the first 8 rows, so if you're not in those seats then you'll find yourself in some kind of stampeded of all of the children trying to get to the snow. Followed by the huffs and tears of those not quick enough.
6. Somerset House is just across the road, we went there after the show to watch the ice skaters with hot drinks and cake. She loved it there, especially the giant tree! For older children it might be a good idea to book in for a skate session for a full festive day out, they are very child friendly over there.