Theatre Review: Sarah And Duck’s Big Top Birthday

It’s time to throw a party for the Scarf Lady, and with help from their friends it’s a party she will never forget!

Presented by Adelaide Festival Centre
Reviewed 16 January 2019

An afternoon of fun and delight was certainly had at Dunstan Playhouse today thanks to the Adelaide Festival Centre, and to two young stars by the names of Sarah and Duck. It’s time to throw a party for the Scarf Lady, and with help from their friends it’s a party she will never forget!

A very talented ensemble of five performers, three male and two female, bring the characters and set to life. They each have a number of essential roles throughout the show, mostly through puppets, as well as changing the simple set from one scene to the next. A limited amount of props, costumes and set was used perfectly, ensuring that the audience was focusing on the main attraction. Sarah and Duck, were adored by the mostly younger audience who were all happy to shout out their names when instructed to.

Sarah and Duck were joined by a number of other fun characters like Scarf Lady, the Ribbon Sisters and Umbrella; each with a unique voice over. Unlike other children’s shows or productions, there was not a villain or anything to frighten younger children, although a few cries were heard when Scarf Lady went into the audience. Crowd participation was minimal, but wasn’t necessary as there was always plenty happening on stage.

The five ensemble performers worked well together, ensuring to engage with one another and the audience, while focusing on each set movement and puppet crossover. They were incredibly well rehearsed and never seemed to miss a beat, as a lot of the action is led by timing, and by the character voice-overs and narration. The visual effects and lighting were also kept to a minimum, keeping the focus on the main characters.

Overall, this was a fun and engaging performance that both parents and children will be delighted by. It was very obvious by the audience reaction that the kids were having an absolute blast, letting the parents sit back and have someone else do the entertaing for a while. Sarah and Duck are also such a likable and fun duo that you can’t help but smile and wave back.

Reviewed by Daniel Knowles

Venue: Dunstan Playhouse
Season: Until 20 Jan 2019
Duration: 55 mins
Tickets: $24.90 – $29.90
Bookings: https://www.adelaidefestivalcentre.com.au/events/sarah-ducks-big-top-birthday/



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