The whole of the UK has gone Roald Dahl crazy this year with the centenary celebrations and UCLU Runaground are at Zoo Venues with James and the Giant Peach this festival season.
As any fans of the popular book will know, the story revolves around James Henry Trotter as he escapes from his evil Aunts in a giant peach, alongside talking insects looking to him for guidance and travels across the Atlantic Ocean. As puppets and shadow art bring their adventures to life, James and his new friends have to rack their brains to survive their travels amidst bad weather conditions and shark infested waters.
The Welsh centipede steals the show at various points and songs and folk music are used to bring life to the story. However, the ensemble is too large and the stage regularly looks cluttered and simple scenes appear chaotic and lacking clear direction. The narrator is slightly too over enthusiastic and some of the younger audience members lose interest fairly quickly as they struggle to keep up.
With some brilliant moments of shadow puppetry and some humorous characters, this performance makes for an enjoyable hour but unfortunately doesn’t quite do the book justice on this occasion.
James and the Giant Peach | Zoo Venues | 14:25