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Raymond Briggs’ Father Christmas
Raymond Briggs' Father Christmas
Lyric Hammersmith
Under 6
22 Nov - 24 Dec 2017
Saturday 02 December 2017

Ever wondered how Father Christmas spends the day before his yearly round-the-world trip? Or how he feels about winter? All it takes is a wiggle down the chimney to join him and find out, so we did just that!

As it turns out, Father Christmas is in a bit of morning grump when we first meet him, grumbling good-naturedly about the cold and his pesky Dog. However, after a chilly visit to the toilet and a good cup of tea, he’s in much better spirits. The plot is simple, charting Father Christmas’ routine from waking up on December 24th to falling asleep on December 25th, but the merry details are what takes this production from pleasant to perfection. Lots of laughs were cause by the antics of Father Christmas’ pets animated by puppetry, and a hen ‘laying’ eggs drew waves of giggles. The use of shadows and light up windows to allude to unseen characters eagerly awaiting Father Christmas’ arrival succeeded in taking us out of his cosy house and into an epic journey around the world.

Despite being incredibly excitable whilst awaiting entry to the studio theatre, the audience came to a hush once Father Christmas’ snores started the performance, and they remained enraptured throughout. The set was charming and full of surprises, which added intrigue as we wondered how it would be used next. A fireplace became the shadowy room of a child awaiting presents before giving way for the sleigh’s grand entry, which packs a punch considering the limitations of the small and intimate theatre. Sound effects and musical accompaniments were provided live by characters on stage, one of whom resided in a sparkling grotto above the action!

With such a simple premise, this adaptation of Raymond Briggs’ grumbling Father Christmas does a lot to take the story off the page and sleigh-riding into the skies. It produces giggles and gasps galore from an audience awed by meeting the man himself, and is a charming addition to a Christmas event diary.

Raymond Briggs’ Father Christmas is showing at Lyric Hammersmith on 22nd November – 25th December 2017. To book your tickets, please visit the website.

Curious Mum