February half term can be a tricky one when it comes to planning adventures – it’s still cold and the weather can be decidedly unpredictable which isn’t necessarily conducive to long days spent outdoors! To combat this, Sale Waterside Theatre have a packed schedule of family friendly shows and we made our way down there on Tuesday morning.
Sale Waterside Theatre is literally just over the road from the tram stop so rather than messing about with parking we decided to hop the tram into Manchester and back out to Sale (meaning we could easily stop in Manchester for lunch on the way home!) We arrived at the theatre a little early and spent some time exploring the Aardman Studios exhibition before popping into the bar area for a very reasonably priced coffee.
Our last trip to Sale Waterside Theatre had been one evening before Christmas and I must admit that Amy had been a bit of a pain, she didn’t want to sit still and I’m not sure she completely understood what was going on. Puss in Boots however is billed as being ideal of the first time theatre-goer so I was hopeful that this, combined with a late morning showing, would mean she really enjoyed the performance!
Puss in Boots is a one man show performed by Cbeebies actor, Patrick Lynch. A sloping stage and an array of clever (and occasionally random) props, costume changes and puppets cleverly tell the well-known tale of a miller’s son and his talking cat. Now I must admit that I couldn’t actually remember the full story (I think it had been blotted out by the Shrek character in my head) and whilst Ben was confident that he knew the tale I don’t think the girls knew it at all.
All five of us were fully engaged throughout the performance, though I would suggest Ben was probably at the upper end of the target audience being as how he spent most of the show trying to figure out all the different stage tricks that were used whereas the girls were just immersed in the magic of the story.
Amy, at 3, wasn’t so keen on the “scary bits” which involved filling the stage with smoke and some loud ogre sound-effects but it didn’t spoil her enjoyment of the show. Chloe said her favourite bit was “the way the flowers stood up” – which was reference to some clever props at the end!
There is no interval for this performance and I was really surprised when it ended to find that we had been there for an hour, time had gone so quickly and I was utterly convinced that we must have only been there for about half an hour. Pleasingly, Amy had sat still for pretty much the entirety of this (with the help of some snacks of course!).
Puss in Boots finishes it’s run at Sale Waterside Theatre on 16th February, however there’s all sorts of exciting things coming up this Easter including Christopher Nibble, The Tap Dancing Mermaid and Monday’s Child. If you’d like to win tickets for Monday’s Child on Saturday 8th April at 2pm you can enter here!
*We were invited to Sale Waterside Theatre to see Puss in Boots free of charge for the purposes of review however all thoughts and opinions remain our own*