The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me by Roald Dahl at the Little Angel Theatre

Little Angel Puppet Theatre have created a puppet version of Roald Dahl’s beloved tale about the ladderless window cleaning team, ‘the giraffe the pelly and me’, and do so with a  creativity that pleased many a little one.

This is a tale about small boy, Billy, whose local but abandoned ‘grubber’ (an old term for a sweetshop in Billy’s part of the world) is bought by a giraffe, a pelican and a monkey who use it as a base for their ladderless window cleaning team. With the help of the boy, they manage to secure work for the Duke of Hampshire to clean the 677 windows of his house. They also foil a robbery and manage to get some food into their rumbling bellies.

Created on a budget, Little Angel Theatre have used inventive ways to create the puppets which despite being made out of simple household objects, still attract the reaching hands of wide-eyed childers when the puppets, particularly the giraffe, lean into the audience. However, it did seem odd to see a puppet show whose faces had no movement at all, bar the pelly’s upper jaw although this was not used for speech. Maybe this was just their chosen style.

Of the songs written for the show the title song stood out the most, although herein lies our only criticism. As the performers were clearly puppeteers and voice artists first, some of the singing was slightly lacking, not that that put off any of the children. The monkey was a great character and was voiced really well, although it was the dastardly criminal, the cobra, who stole the show for us with his worm-like movement.

A real winner for children at the Little Angel Theatre, but it needed a bit more to cross over in order to appeal to older viewers, but if you’re a fan of Roald Dahl you’ll still enjoy this.

Highlight of the show – The Cobra’s entrance, worming his way across the stage.

WIGS 3/5

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