Three Weeks ****
Wonderful review of Gulliver's Travels in Three Weeks
Familia De La Noche have returned to the Fringe with a surprisingly family friendly production, full of humour and delightful details. Puppets become tiny Lilliputians, actors become giants, whole worlds are created in seconds. The story takes place shortly after eccentric traveller Lemuel Gulliver’s death. His daughter is ready to throw out his belongings but, in a series of flashbacks, Gulliver’s assistant shows her the value of each one. It’s a play about adventures, about memories and how we keep those alive: sometimes logic and proof need to be replaced with awe and wonder. ‘Gulliver’s Travels’ is enchanting, colourful and silly – perfect for children who like jokes about bogies, and adults who still believe in magic and mystery.
BOOK TICKETS: https://www.pleasance.co.uk/event/gullivers-travels/performances
broadway baby agree! READ their REVIEW OF GULLIVER'S TRAVELS
Familia de la Noche’s production ofGulliver’s Travels is an adaptation of Jonathan Swift’s satirical novel following several adventures of Lemuel Gulliver as he travels to the land of the tiny people on Lilliput, the giant people in Brobdingnag, the Castle in the Sky of Laputa and finally to the country of the Houyhnhnms. Starring a cast of three actors and several puppets, Gulliver is placed in a new setting two hundred years ahead of his time, from the year 1900 onwards, in an enjoyable and poignant take on the classic.
The play begins with Elizabeth Gulliver entering her father’s old home to see about auctioning away his old possessions as he had recently passed away. Over the last ten years he had grown more detached from the world and consequently she in turn grew to be distant from him. Gulliver’s friend Mr Green goes through his inventory and begins recounting the adventures Gulliver had told him during their acquaintance to help reignite some interest from Gulliver’s disenfranchised daughter.
The set here is neatly designed and though lacking some projection the performances are good. From this point we are introduced to Gulliver who has been tied down by the tiny Lilliputians. Using a mix of costumed actors and puppetry, the visual results are wonderfully silly and fun. Creative set-piece after set-piece makes the first half of this production very enjoyable. The actors were in their element with the puppetry and funny scenarios in the story. It was great realising that Swift’s satirical elements were playing into the comedy such as the absurdities of etiquette and the strange tiny differences between people dividing them.
Much like the book, the play takes a darker turn and though there are still some funny moments in the second half, the tone becomes much more melancholic. The play loses its fluidity a little here though the story being told (diverging from the novel in terms of setting) is actually very interesting and imaginative. It begins to explore the emotions of the characters which, while not as fun as the puppet scenes, are appreciated for following the themes of the novel. The acting here is good, though a little quiet, lacking the enthusiasm of the earlier, funner scenes. While the scenes felt a little disjointed, the play never ceased to be interesting, especially with some interesting plot twists towards the end which explain Gulliver’s later disconnected behaviour.
Gulliver’s Travels is a fun, silly and bittersweet retelling of Swift’s classic. The performances are a joy, especially in the whackier moments, and the puppetry is well-directed and clever. A sweet and stimulating show for families looking for a mix of silliness and seriousness.
VERDICT: A sweet and stimulating show for families looking for a mix of silliness and seriousness.
BOOK TICKETS: HTTPS://WWW.PLEASANCE.CO.UK/EVENT/GULLIVERS-TRAVELS/PERFORMANCES
Our designer Lily Knight is hard at work making our show look spectacular! You can also now find our poster proudly mounted on the wall of the Wilton's Music Hall ready for opening night.
5 days to go!!
Spent the day working with BBC R&D! Experimenting with 360 filming for 'Gulliver's Travels'. Got great footage coming soon...here are a few reactions to watching some scenes on the VR headset.
Crowdfunding for Gulliver's Travels
We are making a new, magical version of Gulliver's Travels and amazing story with all the fantastical things you can expect from a Familia show. There will be tiny people, giant people, mad scientists and talking horses. There will be puppets, masks, beautiful sets and amazing costumes and this is where we need your help.
This year we are pushing the boat out - we want the show to be as visually rich as it is funny and as beautifully crafted as it is heartbreaking. The story has loads of challenges (did you see the bit about the tiny people and the giants - let alone the horses) and we needs some extra cash to make everything as magical as it can be.
Be the first to see the show at Wiltons Music Hall - 27th July 2016
Or catch it in Edinburgh - Pleasance Courtyard, Upstairs, 2.15pm 3 - 29 Aug 2016