Kids enjoy magical pirate tale

 Prince Seth and the Princess: Pirate Adventure Te Puanga Whakaari Theatre Company, July 9-12, Centrepoint Theatre, Palmerston North Reviewed by Tina White

A freezing morning didn't deter a full house of children, mums, grandparents and a few dads at Centrepoint yesterday for the Prince Seth holiday pirate show.

It was the first children's show to be presented at the theatre in 11 years, and many of the children had dressed up in pirate gear for the occasion.

The Te Puanga Whakaari company, based in Feilding and headed by co-artistic directors/producers Karla Crofts and Reihana Haronga, introduced children to Prince Seth and Princess Ricky last year. That show got an enthusiastic response - as did its sequel yesterday.

The simple storyline features the two main characters, Prince Seth (Jacob Wilson) and his girl pal Ricky (Kristi Atkins) being left to amuse themselves in a boring office while both Ricky's aunty and Seth's uncle are away working for a while. Finding a box of props and furbelows, and with the help of a magic storybook, they dream up a pirate adventure, complete with growly pirate captain (Craig Geenty), a puppet parrot, Molly Mabel, and a bunch of raffish ship rats, the Pi-Rats.

The action is fast and physical, with Wilson twisting and tumbling like a pretzel; there's lots of flashy costumes and panto-style shouted interaction from the audience.

Apart from a slightly slow moment at the start when I wished for a musical number, this is a good show for young children.

The clincher came from the two small reviewers who came with me.

The 23-month-old sat still for almost the entire 50 minutes, watching the stage. The 4-year-old, asked what her favourite part had been, said with a fiendish grin: "The fighting!" (swordplay).

Showtimes are 11am and 2pm each day, tickets $10 per person or four for $35.

Manawatu Standard