Everyone knows that Grimm’s fairy tales are the best fairy tales, and as this year marks the bicentennial of their publication they are undergoing a resurgence of popularity assisted by Philip Pullman, who has recently released his Penguin Classic retellings of 50 of his favourite dark Brothers Grimm stories. For Grimm Tales production company Theatr Iolo has brought three of the better known folk tales - Hansel & Gretel, Ashputtel (the original Cinderella story) and Snow White - back into their original realm of oral heritage; staging them with Iolo’s usual blend of charm, verve, and playful humour.
Erini Gregoriades’ set - a puzzle of wooden doors and picture frames - enabled the cast to conjure the scary shadowy forests for Hansel and Gretel to get lost in, and Snow White to escape to, and Jem Treays’ enchanting movement design created energetic dances and hilarious, sweet dwarves. All four members of the cast are shape-shifting chameleons, easily switching between moods and characters as they tell their fireside tales but special mention must go to Elliot Quinn who provided many of the laughs.
Grimm Tales marks Theatr Iolo’s 25th year in making exciting, original theatre for children and young people and their families. Here’s to another 25 spreading even more dreamscapes and delight. This is a magical show with a healthy sprinkle of fear and gory squelch, and plenty to spark the imaginations of young and old.
Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff, 16 October, then touring until 1 December
- Cast includes:
- Running time: