Tidy: Magical and musical children’s play at Polka Theatre

Tidy: Magical and musical children’s play at Polka Theatre

By Ellie Holmes

Image (c) Steve Gregson

Tidy is an adaptation of Emily Gravett’s picture book ‘Tidy’ about a badger who gets carried away with his tidying, and we are transported on a magical journey which is both immersive and sensory.

Pete the badger likes order in every part of his life from the plants surrounding him, to the other animals in his life.

But when Autumn comes, he takes his cleaning too far, and his obsession with tidying means that he ends up bulldozing and concreting over his woodland home.

One of the most vivid scenes is when the music stops and the sound of rain is heard.

The animals realise that the trees they used to shelter under are gone and the animals have no protection, and they are then floating around in a flood.

It looks for a second that Pete is going to be in trouble, but he manages to find a bucket which he uses as a boat.

Fox, Rabbit and Pete then end up getting stuck in the mud which has been left by the flood, and despite their best efforts Rabbit and Pete try to clean up- but keep sliding and falling over. This creates a comical and silly scene which particularly tickled my 6- year old.

The puppets are used to great effect and both the music and liveliness make the play light and liberating.

Despite the good intentions, badger has actually damaged his environment. So, a prudent message for all watching, that they need to look after their worlds around them.

Also of course the idea, that a bit of wild chaos and craziness sometimes is no bad thing.

Designed by Rachael Canning, with music and lyrics by Lucy Rivers, Tidy is aimed at 3- 7 year olds and runs at the Polka Theatre until Sunday 24th March.