One of the things we really like to do as a family at Christmas is to spend time with each other. Each year at the end of term I like to organise a few ‘surprise’ outings for the kids that we can all enjoy. So this weekend saw us heading to the Spiegeltent in Festival Square for ‘You Choose’ – a show based on the book by Pippa Goodhart and Nick Sharratt.
The basic premise of the show is that the audience chooses what happens. Rather like an improv comedy show – a different tale unfolds each day. With the input of children, there is always the risk that it descends into the slightly bizarre but that proved to be half the fun. Our show involved a cat called Gigantasaur, a rock star who enjoyed deep sea diving, and a princess who lived in a volcano with Daisy the Elephant.
As soon as we went in (adults clutching coffee from the bar), the kids were given ping pong balls and were asked to choose which tub they went in. Each tub had a picture attached which later provided the setting for the show. But from the off this show was about everyone in the room.
The show began with a musical performance basically explaining the premise of the show aided by images from the books on the screen behind. The kids soon picked up the gist and were cheerfully shouting ‘you choose’ at the end of every verse!
The show included songs throughout which really helped keep everything going at a pace, interspersed with a series of games and challenges. Some involving kids being chosen to go one stage whereas others included every audience member there!
My kids hadn’t read the book before (although they are big fans of Shark in the Park) but didn’t need to to enjoy the show. Thomas’ became a bit restless at the part of the show which were a little slower but the music really helped to draw his attention back. Katie (aged 6) and the boys next to us (aged 5 and 7) were transfixed throughout and really enjoyed every part.
As per usual (Edinburgh is a village) we saw a number of friends there who all agreed that whilst the kids loved it, there was also something for the adults. There was plenty to chuckle at but everything was family-friendly and a great way to kick off the holidays.
The show is on until January 5th and of course, every show is different! We were kindly gifted tickets for the purpose of this review but they’re available from Edinburgh’s Christmas.