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REVIEW: THE LITTLE MERMAID

REVIEW: THE LITTLE MERMAID

the little mermaid adelaide fringe

REVIEW: THE LITTLE MERMAID

Presented by The South Australian Children’s Ballet Company

When Sebastian the crab sang “Darling it’s better under the sea’ in the Disney movie version of The Little Mermaid, you could be forgiven for thinking he was referring to The Little Mermaid ballet, presented by The South Australian Children’s Ballet Company… because wonderful things certainly surrounded us on the ocean floor at Star Theatre One in the SACBC Fringe performance of the show for the Adelaide Fringe Festival.

the little mermaid Adelaide Fringe

Adapted from the beloved Hans Christian Anderson fairy tale version of The Little Mermaid, from the minute the curtain raised at the Star, the audience of young theatre goers (and their adults!) was taken on a journey from the depths of the ocean floor to the opulent royal palace and beyond.

Anyone with children (or who was once a child themselves) will be familiar with the storyline; young Ariel (played by Heather Benn), a whimsical mermaid harbouring a fascination with dry land, falls in love with the handsome Prince Eric (Thomas Hall) when she spots him and his crew sailing the deep oceans. The evil sea witch, Ursula (Lexi Hopkins) uses the opportunity to make a cruel deal with Ariel – offering her legs in exchange for her voice, and three days to seal her fate with true loves kiss by sunset.

In order to make the ballet accessible for even the smallest audience members, the story is narrated by The Spirit of the Sea (Erihana Winsor) – who navigates the ocean floor in a killer pair of heels (!!) outlining the major plot points, seamlessly piecing each scene together with the rest of the story being told through the magic of dance.

The Little Mermaid

the little mermaid

Stand out moments in the show, which was choreographed by Paul Boyd, with Beverley Waters on board for Artistic Direction, were the underwater scenes performed by the ensemble cast of sea creatures, big and small – including the cutest crab you’ve ever seen! The costuming here was a triumph in and of itself, with all the bright hued Disney-esque jollity you would hope to see in a performance of The Little Mermaid for kids, and absolute commitment of the dancers to their “fish faces”; these fun glimpses into the underwater world were a joy to watch and the audience was in deep!

the little mermaid

You could be forgiven for thinking the dancers, who vary in age between 10 and 19, were seasoned professionals with decades of experience on the stage. A lot of commitment and dedication has clearly gone into learning and perfecting the roles, with nary a single break in character or discernible misstep made, and the onstage flirtation between Ariel and Eric believable enough to make my 6 year old daughter blush! Hopkins rendition of Ursula, the Sea Witch was an absolute standout, and props must go to Gideon Milllar, the young First Mate, who put a spring into every step he danced.

Unsurprisingly, the SACBC had to put on an extra showing of The Little Mermaid this Fringe season, due to popular demand, and this amateur theatre goer can see why, the performance was magical from start to FINish!

For more information about the SACBC:

sacbc.com

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REVIEW: BUBBA-LICIOUS

REVIEW: BUBBA-LICIOUS

Bubba licious

REVIEW: BUBBA-LICIOUS

Full of energy, music and bub-friendly

WORDS: Caitlin Robinson

If you’re after an affordable, engaging excuse to go to the Fringe with your little tyke then Bubba-licious could be exactly what you’re after.

bubbalicious

Kat and her assistants put on an energetic performance complete with shadow puppets, lights and music. Sing-a-longs include familiar tunes like Twinkle Twinkle and Incy Wincy Spider, and incorporate themed props.

Throw into the mix a few songs which, although unfamiliar, are performed with just as much enthusiasm (and some pretty cool light up costumes!) and you have a performance that most toddlers would stare at in amazement (mine did!)

bubbalicious

It’s simply put together, and you’ll have your little one on your lap, but for a perfectly timed 30 minutes of your day, they’ll be bopping, clapping or eyes-wide with wonder and you can sit back and enjoy, knowing you’re in a child friendly environment around other parents.

With a bit of comedy, lots of singing and some crazy dance moves, Bubba-licious is a show made for toddlers by a mum who knows what they’re all about. Top it off with a lovely stroll in the gardens afterwards and you’ve got yourself a day well spent!

Bubbalicious

Dates: Sat 20 Mar – Sun 21 Mar: 11am, 11:45am
Venue: Ukiyo at Gluttony

For tickets:

adelaidefringe.com.au/fringetix/bubba-licious-af2021


Reviewer Caitlin Robinson also blogs at Learning to Mum

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BTS @ Adelaide Fringe: The Magic behind Borealis

BTS @ Adelaide Fringe: The Magic behind Borealis

Borealis Adelaide Fringe

BTS @ Adelaide Fringe: The Magic behind Borealis

WORDS: CARLA CARUSO

Always wanted to see the Northern Lights (or aurora borealis)? Well, you can … right here in Adelaide, COVID-19 travel restrictions be damned.

The Northern Lights, of course, refers to the natural phenomenon whereby shafts of coloured light can be seen, for a short time, in the night sky. Ordinarily, you have to travel to places like Iceland or Alaska to catch it.

But thanks to Swiss artist Dan Acher, the marvel’s been recreated in an installation at Adelaide Fringe hub Gluttony. Dubbed BOREALIS, it uses high-power laser beams to create the illusion, accompanied by an atmospheric soundtrack.

It’s an observational experience. Patrons enter at 15-minute intervals and can choose how long they spend in the installation space, which surrounds Rymill Park’s lake.

We spoke to Dan about how the magic’s created.

borealis adelaide fringe

Hi, Dan. How do you begin designing a light installation like this? Tell us a bit about the process involved.

I always start with the experience, the emotion I want to convey. I had an idea about recreating the Northern Lights anywhere in the world for a long time.

The trigger was when I was asked to come up with an installation for a 200m by 100m public space. I had done large-scale installations before, but on such a space, anything would have looked and felt very small.

I started to look for the technology I’d need, and confirmed it was possible. When I got the ‘go’ to create the piece, I travelled to Germany, and with a team of laser experts, we locked ourselves in a warehouse for DAYS until I was happy with the effect.

Turning it on for the first time, at the final location, was a shock. I had goosebumps and knew this was something special. The real-life tweaking happened there and is still an ongoing process at each location, refining the technology to deliver the most beautiful experience.

How many laser beams are used, and what range of colours?

This is completely dependent on the location. Even though the most common ones are green, we decided to go for the full scale of colours Northern Lights offer in the wild. That makes it even more special.

What was the trickiest part of creating the installation?

The trickiest part and the beauty of this artwork is that it depends entirely on the weather. Temperature, wind, and humidity makes it so that BOREALIS is ever-changing. So, we have to be ready for changes in these parameters all the time to make sure the effect works best.

What can go wrong during an event? How much ‘behind the scenes’ maintenance is involved?

The technology is very secured, so there’s no danger to it whatsoever. One problem could be if the power went down and we’d need to restart the whole system or if the wind started to blow too hard, blowing away the haze we create.

Why do you think people respond so well to light installations like these, the world over?

At least for BOREALIS, I believe people, wherever they are from, respond to the beauty of nature and things that seem magical or bigger than life. And that’s one of the goals of most of my artworks: to create spaces where strangers come together and connect beyond their differences. When we come together and share those feelings of awe, whatever separates us disappears, and we’re simply here experiencing our shared humanity.

Borealis Adelaide Fringe

BOREALIS

Venue: Rymill Park Lake at Gluttony – Rymill Park/Mullawirraburka, Cnr East Tce & Rundle Rd, Adelaide, SA

Date & times:

Fri 12 Mar – Sat 13 Mar: 8pm, 8:15pm, 8:30pm, 8:45pm, 9pm, 9:15pm, 9:30pm, 9:45pm, 10pm, 10:15pm, 10:30pm, 10:45pm, 11pm

Sun 14 Mar: 8pm, 8:15pm, 8:30pm, 8:45pm, 9pm, 9:15pm, 9:30pm, 9:45pm, 10pm

Tue 16 Mar – Thu 18 Mar: 8pm, 8:15pm, 8:30pm, 8:45pm, 9pm, 9:15pm, 9:30pm, 9:45pm, 10pm

Fri 19 Mar – Sat 20 Mar: 8pm, 8:15pm, 8:30pm, 8:45pm, 9pm, 9:15pm, 9:30pm, 9:45pm, 10pm, 10:15pm, 10:30pm, 10:45pm, 11pm

Sun 21 Mar: 8pm, 8:15pm, 8:30pm, 8:45pm, 9pm, 9:15pm, 9:30pm, 9:45pm, 10pm

For tickets:

https://adelaidefringe.com.au/fringetix/borealis-af2021

 

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REVIEW: The Alphabet of Awesome Science

REVIEW: The Alphabet of Awesome Science

alphabet of awesome science review

REVIEW: THE ALPHABET OF AWESOME SCIENCE

WORDS: CARLA CARUSO

Calling all word nerds and science geeks … this is the show for you!

Professors Lexi Con and Noel Edge (real names: Emma Bargery and David Lampard) are the stars of the kids’ show, The Alphabet of Awesome Science.

Their show’s premise? To conduct 26 experiments onstage, relating to 26 big ‘sciencey’ words, in 52 minutes – while a timer counts down.

As they say, every show is completely different as audience members are asked to call out letters at the start and this order dictates how the show will run.

alphabet of awesome science review

Emma reminded me of a cartoon character like Inspector Gadget’s Penny as she dashed about the stage in her yellow Cons, yelling ‘next word!’ and reeling off facts. David, meanwhile, was more like The Nutty Professor, bringing the poo and wee gags, and Dad jokes. (For one experiment, surrounding a fog-filled bottle, he quipped: “I tried to catch the fog the other day, but I mist.”)

There were experiments involving smoke ‘doughnuts’, a fire tornado, and an oversized straw sprinkler (which doused the crowd). Many of the stunts drew oohs and aahs from the young attendees.

Along the way, I learned some fun facts, like that the average adult expels 2L of urine per day, that some of the grossest-sounding English words are ‘pustule’ and ‘yeast’ (I’d concur), and that, thanks to physics, a balloon won’t burst on a bed of nails.

Kids in the crowd also got sprayed with water-blasters and had to choose between a Bluey or Elsa toy getting their own drenching.

alphabet of awesome science review

Some of the science chatter onstage went over my head – many of the words could’ve belonged in Pip Williams’ The Dictionary of Lost Words, they were that obscure. And a few of the experiments I would’ve liked the duo to have lingered longer on, but, alas, that wasn’t the point of the show.

The Flamingo tent was packed to the gills – or, perhaps, the feathers – for the performance. (Best to go for the tiered seating if you don’t want your littlies complaining about their view.)

If biology class at school had been more like this show, I might’ve paid more attention. Fun and educational … who knew?

THE ALPHABET OF AWESOME SCIENCE

Venue: The Flamingo at Gluttony – Rymill Park/Mullawirraburka (Cnr East Tce & Rundle Rd, Adelaide, SA)

Dates & times:

Sat 13 Mar – Sun 14 Mar: 2:30pm

Wed 17 Mar: 10:30am

Sat 20 Mar – Sun 21 Mar: 2:30pm

For tickets:

adelaidefringe.com.au/fringetix/the-alphabet-of-awesome-science-af2021

 

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REVIEW: DISCO WONDERLAND – DANCING TIL DAWN

REVIEW: DISCO WONDERLAND – DANCING TIL DAWN

disco wonderland review

REVIEW: DISCO WONDERLAND – DANCING TIL DAWN

WORDS: CARLA CARUSO
IMAGES:
SAIGE PRIME

Most would be familiar with the premise of the eighties movie, Footloose, where a small US town outlaws rock music and dancing.

Well, Adelaide has felt a bit like that during coronavirus restrictions. But with the ban on boogieing lifted in February for small-to-medium venues, revellers have been more than ready to dust off their dancing shoes.

Enter Disco Wonderland: Dancing til Dawn.

The musical feast – with headliners Paulini (Australian Idol, I’m a Celebrity…) and Timomatic (So You Think You Can Dance) – couldn’t have come at a better time … even with attendees still needing to sit chequerboard-style.

disco wonderland review

Created by production company Release Creative, the show celebrates one of the world’s most iconic nightclubs, Studio 54. A place where rules need not apply, and disco music reigned supreme.

Paulini and Timomatic were accompanied onstage by South Aussies Mark Stefanoff (The Voice), Philippa Lynas (back from New York after touring as a vocalist with Cirque du Soleil) and dancer Amelia Sanzo (also fresh from training in the Big Apple).

With the backing of the band, Er@ser Description, the song list ranged from hits by Donna Summer to The Jackson 5, the Bee Gees, Sister Sledge, and Earth, Wind & Fire.

The ‘visuals’ and choreography by Brendan Yeates was also sublime.

Paulini displayed pipes to rival Diana Ross when she performed a slowed-down version of Gloria Gaynor’s I Will Survive. And Timomatic showed off signature dance moves while singing Jackson numbers (competing with the nearby Jackson vs Jackson show.)

disco wonderland review

Things got a little steamy when Timomatic removed his shirt and did some sexy, interpretative dance with Amelia (while Paulini warbled Rose Royce’s Love Don’t Live Here Anymore). I was reminded of that Polish Netflix movie, 365 Days … though it was all still PG and family-friendly.

For Village People’s YMCA, guests were encouraged to get to their feet. As the show’s narrator said over the mike: “Imagine you’re all going to jail tomorrow, and you get one final night to party!” (Studio 54 really did have one last soiree in 1980 before its founders were convicted for evading taxes.)

disco wonderland review

This was the point of the performance where things really kicked into gear. Like the lyrics of Blame it on the Boogie, the dance-starved Adelaideans present couldn’t control their feet. There was no getting them back in their seat afterwards.

For me, the only thing missing from the show were roller-skates – and a little more interaction with the audience. But, all in all, I was pinching myself at being so close to such stars at the intimate show. Grab your sequinned attire, big hoop earrings, and chain belts, and get your groove thang there!

DISCO WONDERLAND – DANCING TIL DAWN

Venue: The Peacock at Gluttony – Rymill Park/Mullawirraburka (Cnr East Tce & Rundle Rd, Adelaide SA)

Dates & times:

2-7, 9-14, 16-21 Mar at 6:20pm,

7, 13-14, 21 Mar at 12:30pm

For tickets: adelaidefringe.com.au/fringetix/disco-wonderland-dancing-til-dawn-af2021

 

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Adelaide Fringe: The Little Mermaid

Adelaide Fringe: The Little Mermaid

the little mermaid Adelaide Fringe

Adelaide Fringe: The Little Mermaid **EXTENDED SEASON

Due to demand, with four sell-out shows, The South Australian Children’s Ballet Company have announced an extra show on Sunday 14 March, at 11am. Tickets on sale now!

2pm and 4pm – 13th and 14th March 2021
Star Theatre One
145 Sir Donald Bradman Drive, Hilton

Much beloved and classic fairytale, The Little Mermaid, presented and performed by the South Australian Children’s Ballet Company (SACBC), brings the original Hans Christian Anderson fable to life in an enchanting narrated ballet for audiences both young and… not so young!

the little mermaid adelaide fringe

The Little Mermaid Ballet

The magical performance tells the age-old story of rebellious mermaid, Ariel, and her intrigue with life on the land, falling in love with a human Prince on one of her visits to the surface of the ocean. Narrated by “the spirit of the sea” this is a beautiful ballet that is truly accessible to even the youngest theatre goers.

Choreographed by internationally renowned Paul Boyd, no detail is overlooked and no effort spared in creating the perfect stage settings, costumes, lighting and sense of theatre for the performances. This is a highly polished ballet, with carefully blended selection of music and an array of colourful costumes that will have children captivated by the underwater world before them from the first curtain.

The Little Mermaid Adelaide Fringe

South Australian Children’s Ballet Company

The company has 25 dancers from ages 9 – 20 years old who are selected by audition. SACBC members have a rigorous training and rehearsal programme leading up to the performances with twice weekly rehearsals being dedicated to the Fringe season.

the little mermaid adelaide fringe

Support local talent this Fringe season, be entertained, and escape to an enchanting underwater world that brings a classic story to life before your eyes with the beauty and precision of dance.

For tickets: 

adelaidefringe.com.au/fringetix/the-little-mermaid-af2021

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