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Reviews EdinburghNationalReviews Published 25 August 2016

Review: Head In The Clouds at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh

Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh ⋄ Until 28th August 2016

Duška Radosavljević meets Cirrus the shepherd dog at the Royal Botanic Garden’s annual offering of children’s theatre.

Duska Radosavljevic
Head In The Clouds at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh.

Head In The Clouds at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh.

For two years running, we have been stopped in our tracks by rain and distance from getting to the Royal Botanic Gardens in Edinburgh for their offering of children’s theatre. And what a loss for us. The John Hope Gateway building alone is a true treasure trove of botany-related information and learning activities to dip into on a rainy day, and it has one of the best café terraces I have seen this side of the British Channel.

Ipdip theatre has chosen its venue well, transporting us out of the festival hustle and bustle into a world of their own. In the case of their latest show, created especially for an audience of babies, it is a carefree world of Cirrus the shepherd dog. Unusually for baby theatre, the piece has a story (delivered in rhyming couplets) thus appealing to older siblings too. But more importantly, it has balloons and boxes and shiny things and fragrant things and two swift storytelles equipped to deal with any lapses of concentration or sudden incursions into the performing area by wandering audience members.

Truth be told, the performance space – an adapted seminar room – is small and contained, resulting in a rather intimate seating arrangement. But the show is certainly well oiled allowing for enough time at the end to play with the props. Some audience members certainly looked as though they could hardly wait for that bit, especially when it came to meeting the sheep made out of baby bath towels or big white balloons.

And if you don’t have a baby of your own, just take a friend with a baby along – you’re all guaranteed to enjoy the adventure.

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Duska Radosavljevic

Duska Radosavljevic is a dramaturg, teacher and scholar. She is the author of Theatre-Making: Interplay Between Text and Performance in the 21st Century (2013) and editor of The Contemporary Ensemble: Interviews with Theatre-Makers (2013). Duska has also contributed to The Stage Newspaper since 1998 as well as a number of academic and online publications in English and in Serbian.

Review: Head In The Clouds at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh Show Info


Produced by Janis Marshall Reilly

Directed by Charlotte Allan

Written by Charlotte Allan

Cast includes Euan Cuthbertson and Sophie Rose McCabe

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