Christchurch Art Gallery Mainstage, Christchurch

25/02/2023 - 25/02/2023

Ōtautahi Tiny Performance Festival

Production Details

Director: Melanie Luckman
Designer/Operator: Rosie Gilmore

Cubbin Theatre Company

Tai loves sports, the problem is he’s not very good at them. So he makes up his own game: Sportsball! An exuberant and sensitive solo performance about a child who has a big ball and even bigger dreams. Ōtautahi’s own Cubbin Theatre Company presents their brand new show for children under 5, Sportsball. Designed to encourage a growth mindset in young children, the show celebrates and challenges our nation’s obsession with sports. It explores the impact of impatience and failure, adult expectations and their own limitations as well as encouraging playfulness and thinking outside of the square.

Presented as part of Tiny Fest, Christchurch
Saturday 25 February, 12:00 and 15:00
Main Stage (Williams Corp exhibition space) at the Christchurch Art Gallery

Adult Waged
Adult Unwaged
Child (aged 12 and under)

Sportsball by Cubbin Theatre Company


Tai: Christopher Alan Moore

Children’s , Theatre , Solo ,

40 minutes

The display and ball work make for an engaging time and admiring exclamations

Review by Lindsay Clark 27th Feb 2023

As part of the Ōtautahi Tiny Performance Festival, this latest offering from the innovative Cubbin Theatre Company proves once again that theatre play is fun for all ages. A boy, a big red ball and exuberantly physical momentum are simple but effective ingredients.

The boy is Tai, played by Chris (Christopher Alan Moore).  In the solo performance, his extraordinary ability with and on the big red Swiss ball makes it seem almost a live contributor to the action. Play and the pleasure of achieving through play, shape the performance. In the first moments, as Tai picks up the ball and holds it, there is an unexpected and delighted laugh from a young viewer. Soon there are laughs at laughter itself, setting a mood where the audience is freely part of the overall fun.

The story line is brief and uncluttered, designed for an under 5 audience but relished for its energy by adult hangers-on. Tai shows us all the sports he loves, demonstrating with the ball how he can take on rugby or swimming, basketball or volleyball, gymnastics. The display and ball work make for an engaging time and admiring exclamations. Eventually though, Tai, in the course of a birthday party game, finds that he has the lesson of self discipline and perseverance still to learn. Of course he manages that too and in triumph pulls off a complicated back flip on the ball, a tricky procedure we have seen attempted before but never mastered. Be patient, keep trying and you will get better. Not a bad message for all of us.


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