Friday, June 18

The Gruffalo

- December 29, 2015

Copyright Tall Stories

“A mouse took a stroll through the deep dark wood, a fox saw the mouse and the mouse looked good.”

These starting lines of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s award-winning picture book set the scene for the brave mouse’s adventures in the deep dark forest and how he scares away hungry predators he meets on his way with stories of the shaggy-haired Gruffalo. The Gruffalo is an enormously popular children’s story and since it was published in 1999, it has sold more than 10.5 million copies and has been translated into many different languages, including Turkish, Hebrew and Latvian. In fact, The Gruffalo is so popular that my niece is doing it in school and the Dean Heritage Centre at the Forest of Dean have already had a woodland trail on The Gruffalo and The Gruffalo’s Child.

Tall Stories have turned this simple children’s book which only takes five minutes for an adult to read into an amusing, tongue-in-cheek and panto-musical for youngsters aged three and upwards. Susanna Jennings stars as the mouse who loves life in the forest and is searching for nuts with a map when she encounters Timothy Richey as the cunning fox, the keen-eyed owl and the sly snake, and Tom Crook as the fearful Gruffalo. The audience is also called upon to participate; the mouse was keen to teach us to roar like a Gruffalo – louder please louder!

Tall Stories is a charitable trust dedicated to staging family orientated shows and have already adapted other children’s stories including Donaldson and Scheffler’s The Snail and the Whale. Complimentary tickets for babies up to the age of 18 months are available from the box office on the day of the performance. Gruffalo toys, books and flags are on sale in the entrance hall.

Vaudeville Theatre, London, 15 December 2015
Rating: ★★★★☆
Valmae Young

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