It’s something of a Great Yorkshire Fringe tradition to bring a Julia Donaldson tale to life for the benefit of York families, and this year you’ll find the countryside in the heart of town as The Scarecrows’ Wedding comes to the White Rose Rotunda.
The energetic cast of three from Scamp Theatre – a very talented bunch indeed – bring this sweet story to life with lots of music, a clever, pared down set, subtle costume changes and a decent dose of silliness. Those who’ve read the book will be familiar with Betty and Harry’s pursuit of ‘the best wedding yet. A wedding that no-one will ever forget’. The loved-up couple are just as you’d imagine them to be – endearing, funny and really likeable – and the dastardly Reginald Rake is brilliantly, hilariously smarmy. There are some new elements too; our kids loved the surprise appearance of an agonizingly slow snail and a very silly toad who don’t, as far as we can remember, feature in the book.
I’d wondered if our seven year old would be too old for it now – once a Julia Donaldson devotee, he’s now moved onto JK Rowling – but he really enjoyed it and laughed throughout. Our five year old was probably the perfect age, although there were many far younger audience members who were equally mesmerised by it. It’s a charming, witty and heart-warming show that’s perfect for young families. In our daughter’s words “I loved it all. Except the kissing”.