Set on an icy wintery topical tundra, Huddle is one of the best toddler shows London we’ve seen in the last 4 years plus great theatre for kids up to 6 years old.
Penguins love and parenting tales over 50 minutes, told in squawks and hoots, physical and vocal performances, emotional at times, hilarious at others.
Father Penguin Joseph Barnes-Philips gets an egg delivered in a floating crate. Not the most obvious thing to care about, poor egg initially gets thrown around the stage and played with – the kids in the audience will giggle and shout about ! The father penguin Joseph manages though to hatch Victoria Dyson baby penguin and she eventually comes out: wide eyes, cute fury grey costume and eggshell hat; helpless but terribly sweet, excited and completely lost at the beginning. Father and baby penguin figure it out together well : fish from the rope to feed themselves, wobbling and walking, huddling and sleeping. Father penguin Joseph will help baby penguin Victoria navigate the new surroundings and urges : the good old tale of parenting and learning together, an amazing journey both sides, sometimes tiring, sometimes exhilarating.
Baby penguin Victoria sheds her fury outfit little by little, just as she is discovering independence and mild dangers; growing in confidence and caring for her father in an icy climate.
Our first time at Unicorn theatre London Bridge but surely not the last – the area is cool, the theatre has a great set up with coffee shop downstairs and play area upstairs, flying books, topical Christmas tree and penguin filled wintery landscapes.
Our 2 years old loved it but got so excited about icy slide on stage, he moaned the whole performance about going on it! Luckily the play area upstairs is so much fun and made up for it!
Without spoiling too much of the story, my 5 years old got particularly emotional when mother penguin delays to return, whilst the other penguin families are reunited in the background. It’s something he will question Joseph and Victoria after the show as well – where is she? Baby Victoria also has the baptism of a stormy ice night by herself,whilst father penguin Joseph is gone to replenish the fish provisions – it is dramatic and sad but an essential baby graduation lesson afterall !
Book your tickets quickly – Huddle is one of the most fabulous toddler shows London and an emotional story for young kids and big children alike!
The costumes are ingenious, the polar expeditionset is cool, the storytelling beautiful, the live acting is combined with topical penguin projections. 50 minutes have been a stretch for our 2 years old but the 5 years old absolutely adored it. Hugs from both father penguin Josephand baby penguin Victoria, he’s asking me super enthusiastically to come back -what a tale!
For more winter family fun in London, head to our article on Christmas in London with kids.