I Was A Rat
Lowry Theatre, Manchester
Reviewed by Debbie Tasker
This adaptation of the Philip Pullman children's story comes to the stage bringing a fantastic evening of family entertainment.
When there is a knock at the door of Bob and Joan's house one night and a boy bursts in claiming "I was a rat" a tale unfolds full in front of our eyes. Bob (played by Tyrone Higgins) and Joan (Lorna Gayle) try to find out where the boy (Fox Jackson-Keech) who they name Roger after the son they never had, has come from.
The very talented cast of 8 take on the roles of 30 larger than life, colourful characters extremely well. The costume design is out of this world with the circus scene being both grotesque and full of horror while keeping a comedy element. I don't mind admitting I found it a little unnerving, although my younger companions, aged 7, 8, and 10 took it in their stride!
The scenery is very sparse, not that it is a problem as creative lighting and sound more than make up for it, as I am sure was the idea.
Fox Jackson-Leech has played Billy Elliot in the West End and he brings his dancing talent to the role of Roger. He is a joy to watch.
This original theatre mixes both modern and traditional with fantastic results, And of course as with most fairy tales there is a happy ending.
We all loved it, it will appeal to an audience of any age. If you get a chance to go you are in for a treat.
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