Friday 16 August 2013

We're Going on a Bear Hunt LIVE London The Lyric - review

Well it's been our favourite book since Aaron's nursery loaned it to us, about a year ago, and we then bought our own copy (the 7.99 GBP one that includes a great DVD - they actually sell it after the show too but it was sold out the day we were there).  I loved the book instantly and even made a You Tube video of me reading it to Aaron, which has had nearly 7k views (below).  Nursery had him trained to finish each sentence and given that he was only two years of age at the time, I was WELL IMPRESSED.

It's a book we read most days, and certainly a week doesn't pass without us reading it.  I love it as much as Aaron does.

Anyway, when I heard it's now a stage show I just had to go.  I mean we just had to go *cough* obviously.

So we went yesterday, and it is at 11 a.m. which saw an early start for Aaron.  He was very excited as we met his Aunt and two cousins at the station.

We had a great journey there.  Aaron couldn't stay in his seat as usual:

It was my idea for us all to get off the tube at Leicester Square but Piccadilly Circus is actually nearer.  I am glad we got off where we did though as Aaron got to walk on the walls of Leicester Square and we saw the outside of the M&M shop etc... It brought back a lot of memories as both of us ladies had done our courting with our other halves there, plus we had the time to spare.

We also got to take this lovely photo :-)

On arrival the first thing you see is the buggy sign. We didn't have one but it's dead handy for anyone who does:

Yep it is in the same venue as Thriller Live (which actually I have also seen - years ago with Sandra - pre Aaron).

This got our excitement levels up and we knew we were in the right place:

Yes as it says it has been extended to 8th September from 1st September.  So plenty of time for you to go.

Nimax are selling the tickets online OR CALL 0844 482 9674 

Although they seem to be cheaper from The Box Office

Just had a look to get some info for this review and they actually do two shows a day (most days) so you don't have to go as early as we did :-)

This is a selfie I took of us, pre-show, as my SIL and the girls were in the dress circle and we were in the stalls.  Normally the stalls is not the best place but we had a good view and it meant we enjoyed the water they sprayed AND the snow :-) (I think you DO get water upstairs but not the snow).

I was worried about the minimal set design as below, before the show started but it was great:

I stuck to the rule of not filming during the show but I just HAD to grab a pic of the BEAR to reassure you and your little ones dear reader that he was not at all scary. Looook:

Oh the way out of the theatre EVERYONE was having their photo taken with this poster, plus every child was given a sticker with the same poster on it, and Aaron insisted on wearing it all day.  Well till he got his cossie on at the Diana Playground water area LOL.

Aaron loved the show.  He moved from his seat onto my knee very near the beginning, due to it being dark etc... but he did enjoy it.

I took him to the loo in the theatre just before it began so we got to stay in our seats for the full 55 minute show (on a recent trip to the cinema he went to the loo twice always during good bits).

Like other reviews online, I did keep looking for the additional member of the "book" cast, the female who none of us can agree on as to whether she is a Mum or older Sister.  The play only has the people who are featured on the front cover of the book (so one female not two). It is not something that Aaron noticed.  But funnily enough the female is on the inside front cover with the dog, and the dog is included in the play.

The cast are all made up of adults and the dog is an adult also, a very talented one.

It worked very well that the baby is a puppet, although the baby is missing from a scene, that the baby is in, in the book...

It took me a while to adjust to kids being played by adults but Aaron did not notice the difference bless him.

My favourite part of the show - acting and music wise - was when they were all running back from the cave to the house.  That was the bit that was the most dynamic, with a really fab rhythm.  I was disappointed though that when they got home, the bear is not on stage when they shut the door (in the book they shut the door in his face).  He was only on stage when they find him and for the curtain call bows.  Also, there isn't the scene where he is walking into the sea, like at the end of the book, instead he is in a VERY good mood at the end of the show LOL.

But my ultimate favourite magical part of the show was when it snowed on us.  We were one row back from the end of the snow (at row K) so I would get forward of that if I was you, i.e. stalls rows A to J.  It's really really mystical and made me long for Christmas even though I do NOT want Summer to end.

As we have watched the animation of the book on DVD and on You Tube so many times I think the different melody did throw us both a little (me more I reckon) but it didn't stop Aaron enjoying it.

The show is very demonstrative with them doing lots of creative messy play on stage, so much so, that it lends itself to after school work that links to the show.  Go to this web page where you can download the Word document education pack.  It is something I would do AFTER the show, as it will spoil some of the surprises.  You know even if you have a pre-schooler it is well worth a read.  Plenty of fun things in there to do with littlies.

They actually spray the audience with water pistols during the bit where they get wet in the book (just to warn you).

We didn't have snacks during the show but we went to Prezzo for lunch after as my SIL had Tesco vouchers.  It came to 71 GBP and we only had to pay 15 GBP.  I got Aaron an amazing 3.50 GBP kids meal which includes a starter a meal a drink and ice cream.  My only criticism would be that the pasta portion was too small (and ironically the adult portion too large).

The Manager on duty was so so lovely and literally couldn't do enough for us.

Just like on the Tube he did not stay in his seat but my SIL employed lots of tactics to get him back sitting like making a fan out of the paper they were drawing on, and then coin spinning on the table which he'd never seen done before.

We then went to the Princess Diana Memorial Playground which I simply cannot recommend highly enough!

Princess Diana Memorial Playground sign

We entered Hyde Park from the Lancaster gate side which meant we had a long walk to the playground but boy was it picturesque.  Just look at those fountains to the left.  The children spent a long time walking around those and it was just so mellow I felt like I was abroad.  I am so glad we did not enter the right gate, as it would have been a baptism of fire straight into the playground without the beautiful mellow walk that was so appreciated to chill us after the tube journey on the Central Line to get there.

There was so much to do once at the Playground, you could spend a whole day there :-)

It started with me taking his shoes and socks off like this:

But not before long they were all in their costumes: Aaron and my 2 nieces.  We had planned to go to water fountains of some sort so we'd come prepared.

There is a LARGE Pirate Ship there so with Aaron being a Jake and The Neverland Pirates fan, he was in his element.

3 year olds love water though so I would say that is where he spent most of his time.

Make sure you have some empty bottles, as filling them up at the taps and emptying them into the paddling rock pool seems to be an activity that keeps them occupied for a LONG time!

I am not including all of the photos but there is SO SO SO much to do there.  Everything wooden and beautiful with either a sand floor or a wood chip floor.  We were there for hours and I spent most of it barefoot.

There's a coffee shop, toilets and first aid there too.

Disclosure: I was given complimentary tickets for Aaron and I by the PR company, but my SIL and her nieces were fully paid for by themselves and it was a MUST SEE show for us anyway.  All the words are my own.  I owe a BIG company to The Mini Mes and Me for putting me in touch with the RIGHT PR company :-)


  1. Glad to hear you had a wonderful time and I'm glad to have helped :)

    The food looks yummy too! X

  2. Looks like a great day out! I fancy that show now, may look out for it to take my boys.
    Would love to check out the diana park too, when we went before it was so busy had to queue to get in, so we missed out

  3. Thanks for this: it looks like a freat show, & looks like you had a great day out! We love the book too so hopefully it'll turn up here in Wales :)

  4. The show sounds great - tut tut taking a photo of the bear :P
    I agree the Princess Diana Memorial is such a great park and has something for such a variety of ages.


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