Children's fun at the Komedia

Colin Granger
Colin Granger

After widespread success with Pitschi, the Kitten with Dreams, Theatre Fideri Fidera is back at Brighton’s Komedia this Christmas with its new show, Oskar’s Amazing Adventure (Dec 16-24 and 27-31).

Set in the snowy Swiss Alps, the show comes billed as the perfect theatrical treat for young children and their families this Christmas.

But it was in the summer in Edinburgh that it found its feet, as children’s author Colin Granger says.

“We have been previewing it this year in various places and then we took it to Edinburgh which is always a tough call. It is quite difficult to get a children’s audience in Edinburgh. I think in Edinburgh, the local people can be a bit cut off from the festival. There are all these people invading their town from all parts of the world and all part of the Britain, and actually the visitors don’t bring young children to see plays so much. They tend to come with teenagers. The city is totally swamped on such a big scale. You can’t walk down the streets. You can’t get into any restaurant to eat. It is just so full, and all the local people don’t usually bring their children out.

“But this year, we had the help of a young Scottish lady with a lovely accent who was very good at getting people in, and we got some really good audiences.”

The piece uses Theatre Fideri’s Fidera’s characteristic mix of storytelling, physical theatre, puppetry and music and song to tell the heart-warming story of a fun-loving puppy who runs all the way down a mountain in search of a friendly animal to play with. But where have all the animals gone? And why must Oskar wait until spring to play his favourite game again?

Each performance of the show will be followed by a play session where the children can meet all the animal characters from the play including Oskar. Colin will also be there to show the children illustrations from his picture book of the Oskar story.

Fun-loving Oskar is bored in Grandma’s snow-bound little house on top of the mountain and goes out to find a friendly animal to play with. But the animals he meets are more interested in dinner than a game, and Oskar avoids a hungry fox only by falling down a deep hole and landing on top of a young, hibernating marmot. Marmot forgives Oskar for waking her and using her whistling and digging skills reunites the little dog with his family.

The performer in the one-person show will be Colin’s daughter Natasha: “She has had great success with Pitschi. The venues all know Natasha. The show is done through a mix of things. There is quite a lot of physical theatre. There is quite a lot of clowning, and there is also a lot of story-telling as well. She plays the narrator and she plays the daughter of the grandma and she also plays the grandma.”