WHY ARE MY PARENTS SO BORING?
01/10/2022 - 15/10/2022
Written by Dan Bain
Directed by David Ladderman
Presented by KidzStuff Theatre for Children
A Silent Show for Loud Children
“…an original story with depth and heart… the interactions with the audience are genuine and story driven. Highly recommended.” – Theatreview, Court Theatre season.
Why Are My Parents So Boring? is the second of writer Dan Bain’s trilogy of silent shows for children.
A play about playing… unfolding in the manner of a silent movie. Why Are My Parents So Boring? explores the relationship between a hyper-active seven year old and their parents, who are soooo boring. Off beat and heartwarming, Why Are My Parents So Boring? is must-see, live children’s entertainment.
You may remember our Director David Ladderman. In 2021, he played Dog, in Tale Of A Dog, for KidzStuff. He is now returning to direct Why Are My Parents So Boring?, which he also acted in the original version of. It was performed at the Court Theatre in Christchurch and then continued to tour in the South Island. This will be its first iteration in the North Island.
Starring: Damon Manning, Laurel Mitchell, Riley Brophy.
Riley Brophy is also a very talented actor that you may recognise from our Front of House desk, and will be acting for us in this show. He has an impressive array of screen and stage credits, including a Best Actor Award for his lead role in a short film when he was just 9 years old!
Damon and Laurel are new to KidzStuff. Damon trained at Te Auaha in circus and musical theatre. He has worked as a performer on the prestigious World of Wearable Art Awards Show. Laurel hails from sunny Gisborne and completed her Arts degree at Victoria University. She has been most recently doing puppet work for Little Dog Barking Theatre Company.
Tararua Tramping Club, 4 Moncrieff St, Mt Victoria, Wellington
1st – 14th October 2022
Monday – Friday 10am & 11:30am
10am shows only on Saturdays!
Tickets $12.50 pp, Children under 2 Free
$7 Special Preview, Saturday 1st October 2022
Children’s , Family , Theatre ,
Fun and playful with an important message
Review by Jo Hodgson 04th Oct 2022
“I’m bored” or “You’re so boring?” – the age-old cry of children through the years. The response often being, “Only Boring People get Bored” or “Good, boredom ignites the imagination.” And this play certainly does that for the young audience gathered today.
The dictionary tells us that the adjective ‘Boring’, is: Someone or something boring is so dull and uninteresting that they make people tired and impatient.
So are parents really just dull and uninteresting? Or is it just, as a friend joked, “…. because we’re working our a***s off to put a roof over your head, you ungrateful little…!”. But yes, there is a perception of little time for much else and a tie to provide a ‘good’ life.
Or is it the kids just saying, Why aren’t you paying attention to me? Why aren’t you listening to me? Why are you always busy working? Why can’t you play this game with me right now? You’re always on your phone (or in this play’s case, reading the newspaper).
I think we probably know how this will play out. It’s touted as A Silent show for Loud Children.
Two monochrome conservatively attired adult figures – Parent 1, Laurel Mitchell and Parent 2, Riley Brophy – search the house. It looks a bit like one of those classic games of hide ’n’ seek where the parents charmingly pretend not to see the blatantly obvious hiding efforts of their young child – Damon Manning – but it soon becomes apparent that these particular parents are so preoccupied with their own world and the world they expect to have that they don’t see the possibilities and opportunities presented to them with having a child.
Though physical theatre, clowning, mime and an excellent sound effect palette, expertly timed by tech operator Georgia Kellett, we journey into this family’s world. The tedious routine and, yep, boring predictability of their way of life is interrupted by the exuberance of their colourful and chaotic child who just wants to play and interact with his parents in the school holidays.
Just like any child left completely to their own devices or fobbed off, various ploys are tried to get attention which invariably results in Super Nanny styled timeout on the ‘naughty step’ and the eventual exploration/demolition of rooms in the house, and wandering off when distracted by a ball when the adults are otherwise occupied. This is the catalyst which results in a metamorphosis moment for the parents as they, thankfully, discover another side of themselves.
This play by Dan Bain was first performed at Court Theatre, Christchurch in 2012, and David Ladderman, who played ‘the dad’ in the original production, directs a creative piece of theatre. It is fun and playful, with witty choreography between the characters, but also highlights the important messages of a story which is played out in most households in some form or other as parents and children balance their own and the others needs and wants against a societal background that can feel somewhat stifling.
Although the idea of stuffy parents learning to have fun isn’t new, and we can quickly see the projected story arc, the journey the three performers take to its conclusion is engaging and fun. They embrace the style and the challenge of non-verbal theatre with some excellently co-ordinated physical theatre. While there may be room for bigger and even more deliberate depiction, the young audience delights in the story unfolding in front of them with giggles and when invited, take on their role in the piece with excitement.
Sometimes, as a parent, it does get rather overwhelming – but, hey, its school holidays. Try to take some time to play, reignite the imagination, go fly a kite, throw a ball – and why not take in some holiday theatre along the way.
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Copyright © in the review belongs to the reviewer