Review: The Adventures of PINOCCHIO (Cow Over Moon Children’s Theatre)

The Adventures of Pinocchio amuses kids of all ages at Toronto’s Unit 102 Theatre

I had the rare opportunity to check out an afternoon children’s show yesterday and boy was it fun! It was great to see all the little kids come out and get excited to see some live theatre. The kids ages ranged from toddlers to about seven-year-olds I would say. I think that slightly older kids would enjoy it too. I know I did.

The Adventures of Pinocchio starts off with Jiminey Cricket bursting onto the stage. She introduces herself to every single audience member personally and gets the kids all warmed up and excited for the show. There is a lot of interaction between the audience and the actors, which the kids seemed to love. It’s funny how most adults find shows with audience participation awkward and embarrassing but kids are much the opposite.

The show is only about an hour long and follows the classic Pinocchio story, but there are a few current references which helps make it relateble to kids living in Toronto. For example Pinocchio and Geppetto’s favourite restaurant is Swiss Chalet.

I thought the show was smart, funny and full of moral guidance. I liked that there were some adult jokes in there too – nothing inappropriate in the slightest – like a few digs at mayor Rob Ford. The parents loved it.

The entire cast did a great job. Pinocchio (Monique Renaud) couldn’t have been any cuter; Jiminey Crickets (Amy Keating) was a bursting ball of energy; and Geppetto (Dan Hershfield) does a pretty convincing Italian accent. My show partner Kerry-Ann and I really enjoyed Faisal Butt’s performance as the fairy and the evil Mr. Stromboli. He was hilarious throughout the show. At one point he does an impromptu rap song and manages to mention every child’s name in it while being funny. Genius.

I loved that there was more than just the show for the kids. There were cookies and juice afterwards and the kids got to meet the cast who were signing show posters and giving them out to the kids – such a nice touch.

If you’re looking to spend a fun day with a child, I think this would be a great activity. I’m sure all the kids who were there will be talking about this one for a few days. Go check it out.

Details

The Adventures of Pinocchio is playing at Unit 102 Theatre (376 Dufferin St) until May 21, 2012
– Performances run from May 16 to 21 at 2pm. Please note Friday, May 18 is a 4pm show instead.
– Tickets are $10 for kids and $15 for adults
– Tickets are available at the door (reservations are recommended as it’s a small space), online or by calling (905) 510 8210.