Lost and alone in the jungle, how will the infant Mowgli survive in this terrifying but wonderful new world? And how will he escape the claws of the vengeful tiger, Shere Khan?
Only the help and guidance of Baloo the bear, Bagheera the panther and Akela the wolf can protect him from the mischievous monkeys, the powerful python Kaa, and ultimately from himself.
Rudyard Kipling's classic tales of the Indian jungle, animals, humans, friendship, love and the natural laws that bind us all together, are brilliantly brought to the stage in BB Cooper’s musical, written by Toby Hulse. A spell-binding, edge-of-your-seat adventure of song, dance, music and laughter that evokes the brilliance of Kipling’s original stories.
New Music by BB Cooper
Written by Toby Hulse
Director Martin Berry
Lighting Design Richard Statham
Suitable for everyone aged 6+
Wednesday 12 – Friday 14 July 7pm
Wednesday 19 – Friday 21 July 7pm
Saturday 15, Sunday 16 July,
Saturday 22 July 2pm & 6pm
Sunday 23 July, 2pm
Approximately 2 hours including interval
Lakeside Arts invited us to see The Jungle Book on opening night, 12th July 2017. We sent two grown-ups keen to connect with their wild sides.
The first thing to say about this production is that it is an adaptation of Rudyard Kipling’s book, not of the Disney Film. It is a musical, there is a lot of singing, of original songs. The tone is a lot less cute and considerably more menacing, yet no less funny, than the film.
The plot is familiar, its essentials easy to grasp; Mowgli lost in the jungle, adopted by a wolf mother, educated by an avuncular bear, scared by a seductive snake. A struggle plays out between vicious, power-hungry tiger Shere Khan and self-sacrificing pack-leader Akela. Adolescent Mowgli discovers the attractions and pitfalls of freedom, growing to know himself and to repay the love of those who have cared for him.
Characters are conveyed effectively, through movement, voice – including many fearsome howls and roars – costume and song. There’s danger in the first half, as animal antagonists stake out Mowgli’s fate, then leavened by Baloo’s gentle, persistent education in the laws of the jungle. The very cheeky monkeys run amok delightfully in the second half, offering toilet humour, literally and a chaotic contrast to the orderly world of the wolf pack.
It is exciting to see such a lusciously set production, with so many people on stage, at Lakeside. This is made possible by an amateur cast – who are clearly enjoying themselves. They are also extremely well cast and rehearsed. This is a slick presentation, indistinguishable from the professional.
Age-wise, it’s a tricky one to pin down. The published recommendation is 6+. That seems about right to avoid upset at the scary, noisy, menacing bits but is a little young to appreciate everything the plot offers, in its struggle for power, love, identity and peace. There is fighting, killing and parental death but peripherally, framing Mowgli’s story; he finds love and care as he needs them throughout. Younger children in the audience seemed unperturbed – overheard comments focused on the cuddlier characters and well-observed details, such as how Baloo, constantly eating, held on to an apple to the very end. A child who is happy watching The Lion King will probably be happy with this.
Powerful, dark and funny; a howling, hissing, roaring and rewarding musical trip to the Jungle.
IA and CG for Mumsnet Nottingham
Times and prices are subject to change. Contact venue before setting out.
Event contact: Lakeside Arts
0115 846 7777