Tag Archives: theatre

The Hertford Theatre Does it Again in the Panto Department   

I always thoroughly enjoy the Hertford Theatre productions and this year’s pantomime, Little Red Riding Hood, is no different. With the intertwining fairytales of the Three Little Pigs and Little Red, the storyline keeps engaging interest for all ages.


It starts with simple Simon, the pig farmer, and his friendship with Little Red. They’re each on their own journeys with Simon searching for his lost little pigs and Red on a journey to deliver some meds to her ill grannie. The trip to grannie’s humble abode has Little Red wandering from set to colourful set meeting many full-of-life characters and most of them are the wolf in sheep’s clothing.

As with any pantomime, there’s the interjection of fun and poppy music. With a play on many pop culture ditties, the journey of tunes carries you from the recurring theme song of Friends, to Coldplay favourites, and some Mary Poppins standards. Familiar songs kept the audience toe tapping, interactively singing, and cast supportive throughout.


Which brings us to the cast…The following words come to mind: magnificent chemistry, quality acting and choreography, and superb vocals. One of the best panto lineups the Hertford Theatre’s produced.


For the two hour and twenty minute runtime, the combination of story, music, and interactivity kept my almost six-year old and me thoroughly entertained. It’s a wonderful Christmas treat for 2016 and we’re looking forward to next year’s production.

Little Red Riding Hood is running at the Hertford Theatre until 1 January so get your tickets fast:



Review: “Mrs. Armitage and the Big Wave” A Great Family Day at the Theatre

Mrs. Armitage and her faithful dog, Breakspear, are off to the seaside for a day of surfing; but what happens while they’re waiting for the big wave makes Quentin Blake’s story a sincere display of true companionship, trust, problem solving, and eternal optimism.

I recently had the privilege of experiencing the Ga Ga Theatre Company’s adaptation of this lovely story at the Abbey Theatre in St. Albans. We took the whole family to this hour-long production and it was a wonderful, interactive way of giving young children a taste for the theatre, as well as having a lovely morning together.


The entire play uses two clearly talented actors each portraying a handful of upbeat, amusing characters. Different voices and accents are used to give real variance and depth to the characters and certainly keep the audience, especially the children, interested.

The main characters endure many situations as they’re ‘waiting for the big wave;’ and with each comes the choice of either giving up or staying positive and finding a solution. These scenarios also made for some good discussion with the kids after the show.  mrs_armitage_0393

The combination of quality acting, funny lines, simple, yet clever, props, and animated, projected sketches make for a well-integrated way of interpreting Blake’s story. Well done to the Ga Ga Theatre Company for this fun production. Looking forward to your next project soon.

For more information on the Ga Ga Theatre Company and their coming productions, see the website, here: http://www.gagatheatre.co.uk

For more fun, check out Mumsnet Hertfordshire’s site: http://local.mumsnet.com/hertfordshire

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Big Wooden Horse and Nick Brooke Limited present:
Aliens Love Underpants


Laugh your pants off with this number one bestselling children’s story, brought to life on stage for the very first time.
Hold on to your bloomers and prepare for a pant-abulous, knicker-tastic adventure.

This national bestseller and much-loved family favourite is reimagined for the stage for the very first
time, with special effects, original music, lots of aliens and many, many pants.
Created by children’s theatre company Big Wooden Horse and produced by Nick Brooke, this must-see production comes to Hertford Theatre as part of its nationwide tour.
Aliens Love Underpants tells the story of a gang of mischievous aliens on a visit to earth, travelling not to visit to the earthlings, but simply to steal their underpants!

Silly, quirky and irresistibly fun, the show follows the aliens as they ransack the washing line on their search for pants–big and small, red or green. They love Grandma’s spotted bloomers, while Grandad’s long johns make for the perfect slide!
The book, written by Claire Freedman and illustrated by Ben Cort, was selected for Richard and Judy’s Children’s Book Club with the help of pupils from schools around the UK, and has been hugely popular since it was first published in 2007.
Director Adam Bampton-Smith said, “This funny and colourful book makes a wonderful stage show, which is just right for a family audience. It’s simply pantastic!”

Big Wooden Horse strive to present high quality theatre to younger audiences across the United Kingdom. They believe that young people deserve the highest quality that a professional theatre company can offer. The company’s productions aim to both entertain and inform young people, drawing from different cultures and traditions.

Nick Brooke Ltd, established in 2002, is a West End-based entertainment production company, specialising in children’s theatre. In 2005, the company presented its first children’s production, The Gruffalo, a stage adaptation of Julia Donaldson’s award-winning children’s picture book. This production has toured the UK extensively since then and has enjoyed six successful West End Christmas seasons. The company’s other children’s productions include We’re Going On A Bear Hunt, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, and The Tiger Who Came To Tea.

Tickets can be booked via www.hertfordtheatre.com or 01992 531500 and cost £11 each or £42 for a family ticket.


Yes, it’s February Half-Term next week. One of the tougher half-terms in the sense that the weather doesn’t always cooperate, the children are inside more, and you end up with high-energy kiddos with cabin fever! In Hertfordshire, however, there’s plenty to do. Here are a few ideas:

Awesome Engineers Half Term LEGO Workshop, 20 February

Awesome Engineers Ltd run workshops and centres, encouraging children and adults to get excited about Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths through building working LEGO® models. The mission is to stimulate and support greater engagement and understanding of STEM skills through inspiring and creative model making programmes.

More information, here:  http://local.mumsnet.com/hertfordshire/half-term/404001-awesome-engineers-half-term-lego-workshop

Family Scavenger Hunt, 19 February

Join in with Herts & Middlesex Wildlife Trust’s Scavenger Hunt and get crafty this February half term.

Follow our trail through the park and have a go at a traditional scavenger hunt or bring your camera along and try our photographic scavenger hunt! See what you can make with your findings or make a special photoframe ready to frame your best photo!

Find us by Thieves Lane car park (nearest postcode SG14 2TD), free event, no need to book just turn up and have fun!

More information, here: http://local.mumsnet.com/hertfordshire/half-term/403257-family-scavenger-hunt

“The Elves and the Shoemaker” by the Stuff and Nonsense Theatre Company, 14-18 February

Sat in his kitchen workshop, Sam Lacey makes terrible shoes and tries to sell them online. They are so bad that no one really wants them, not even his neighbour (who thinks he should give up and get a real job!). Then one night, two tiny visitors climb in through the window and start cutting and stitching and gluing… and Sam’s life is never quite the same again!

The inescapably eccentric Stuff and Nonsense Theatre Company present an up to date re-telling of everyone’s favourite story about Elves and shoes. There are stunning puppets, music and surprises aplenty. Craft workshops 16 – 18 Feb, 1pm • £6

More information, here: http://local.mumsnet.com/hertfordshire/half-term/394831-the-elves-and-the-shoemaker

POP: CBBC’s Christian Lee, 20 February

Mr Bean meets Charlie Chaplin by Winner of CBBC’s The Slammer

The most fun-filled show for children and families around!

With his faithful teddy bear, deckchair and fantastic basket of tricks, Christian is all set for a lovely day at the seaside … until the day takes a turn and things don’t quite work out as planned. Join our hapless hero and be astounded in this totally word-free clown and magic show that follows his exciting adventures at sea. Mr Bean meets Charlie Chaplin in this mind-blowing feast of illusion, comedy and a MASSIVE balloon!

POP is performed by award-winning comedy magician Christian Lee – winner of CBBC’s The Slammer and associate of the Inner Magic Circle with Silver Star.

More information, here:  http://local.mumsnet.com/hertfordshire/half-term/403464-pop-cbbcs-christian-lee

Ricky Pancake Race , 17 February

Teams from local businesses will be racing along the High Street while flipping pancakes. Many dress up and it’s a fun, outdoor activity that’s free to come and watch. There are plenty of cafes and tea shops to visit to warm up afterwards!

More information, here: http://local.mumsnet.com/hertfordshire/half-term/402759-ricky-pancake-race

Get Wild, Open daily

This jungle themed adventure area provides children aged 1 – 12 with an exciting setting in which to play.

Get Wild! hosts an assortment of slides, tunnels, rope walks, climbing frames and much, much more! Fun and excitement are guaranteed in a safe environment where children can crawl, run, swing, slide, play, climb and grow and there’s even a dedicated area for toddlers.

But we haven’t forgotten about mum and dad! There is plenty of space for ‘grown ups’ to relax with a coffee, to read the papers or catch up with friends, whilst the kids burn off all that energy. With so much to do, you won’t hear complaints of boredom amid the screams of laughter!

More information, here: http://local.mumsnet.com/hertfordshire/soft-play/338182-get-wild