I really enjoy doing activities with the girl and the boy that I myself like doing, and one of those is going to watch shows. I really enjoy the whole experience of visiting the theatre. The lights, the excitement, the music (the pick and mix). So here is a few tips if you are thinking of taking your toddler to the theatre and are a bit apprehensive.
School production of Little Shop of Horrors
Pick your show carefully
We have been to see a few shows and I must admit the ones that have gone down a treat are ones that the girl has really been excited about. For example we went to see 'Peppa's Big Splash' at the Birmingham Alexandra theatre. She had seen adverts for this on the tele and so was enthralled throughout. We also went to see Dora at the very same theatre. It was a nightmare. She hated it. Had no clue what was going on and screamed she wanted to leave pretty much from the minute we got there! Bloody swiper and his crazy scary foxy ways. Grrrrr.
Before the show
Have a little look at the show before you go so you know what you are letting yourself in for. For Peppa we visited the website and it showed a clip of exactly what the show was like. The characters weren't big human sized characters. They were in fact little puppets. So I got the chance to manage her expectations. She would have gone in and thought they were going to be giant and ended up super disappointed (and no doubt howling in anger).
Snacks and treats
Be warned you will be attacked with a whole range of (expensive) character products and those bloody inflatable balloons that never ever ever deflate! So be prepared and take some snacks yourself and maybe forward think and take a little toy with you. Poundland sell loads of kids character things Disney, Peppa, Dora and so on. Just pop a few in your bag. Or make sure you take some (lots) money with you. I have been stung before and ended up buying a Mr Tumble weird light up thing for a tenner.
In the show
Again prepare your little one for the fact the lights will go down and there will be loud music. Also have a think if there are going to be any 'baddies' in it. The girl hates baddies. We went to see Little Shop of Horrors yesterday and she howled at the plant at the end as it ate the people. She sobbed and sobbed. I even wanted her to see the plant to prove it but she wouldn't let me as she thought I would be eaten. Lesson learnt. No human eating plants for tiny tots.
Best shows to see
A lots of the big kids shows that come round do matinee shows. These are great for toddlers. They are full of other crazy mad toddlers and exasperated parents. You will not be alone. In Peppa the boy weed all over me and I changed him in the aisle. No one batted an eyelid! Disney on Ice is a good relaxed atmosphere. If you are going to an arena show though please bear in mind that it is rammed. So so so busy and can be a bit overwhelming for both parent and child. It's best to either go alone with one child. Or in a bit of a group. Often 2 and under can sit for free on laps. Also think about the fact if you go somewhere like the LG Arean or 02 you're going to be quite a way from the action.
Oh we make a real fuss when we go to a show. We always dress up (Disney on Ice is great as most of the children are in outfits). We always get the soundtrack or download the songs off you tube a few days before to get all excited. It doesn't need to be expensive. It can be a local am dram show, or a show at a holiday camps. Anywhere really. You will be shocked at how well you toddler will cope. Promise!