Last spring, I took my four-year old to the theatre. It was his first experience with a live show and we saw Go, Dog. Go! at the Seattle Children’s Theatre. I wasn’t disappointed. So, this summer when the schedule came out for the new season, I had to get tickets for all the shows that would be perfect for my Pre-K guy.
The beginning of the season kicks off with Harold and the Purple Crayon, written by Crockett Johnson, which runs until October 30. The show runs about 90 minutes, with a little break in the middle for snacks and bathroom breaks.
First, if you aren’t familiar with Harold, it is a classic and you must get your little ones a copy. A story all about imagination and the ability that a little boy has to create whatever world he wants with just a purple crayon. It is a title that every child’s library should include.
I was very curious how this story would translate to the stage, as Harold doesn’t say much in these stories. How in the world were these actors going to keep this story moving?
As soon as we sat down, I loved the whimsical set. You are now in Harold’s world! As the show opens, we get to watch him draw with his giant purple crayon. The production uses a combination of props, puppetry, and animation to make Harold’s pictures come to life. Pretty cool, I must say. The entire show incorporates music and movement, which moves things along as Harold explores his universe.
The audience gets to join Harold under water, on a rocket in outer space, and in the city. My personal favorite scene is the one with the pie, the porcupine, and the moose. If you know what I’m talking about, you will not be disappointed. The song is amusing, though I’m pretty sure my four-year old didn’t quite get it. It’s all about love and pie. The beauty of it, though, is that it didn’t matter.
After reading the book a thousand times, I think my date was a little overwhelmed by the whole show. I mean Harold had all of a sudden come to life before his eyes. I’m not sure he was entirely prepared. Sort of like meeting Mickey Mouse or Santa for the first time.
As a parent, I was very impressed by this production. Be aware, though, that very young children may be frightened at certain points. However, I think that children familiar with the story will be entertained and in awe. This interpretation is clever and witty. It is a magical experience for a child to see a book come to life!
If you decide to go, enjoy the show!