Left – Teale Howie, Freya Pragt, Samuel Welsh. Cover – Teale Howie, Danielle King, Samuel Welsh. Photos – Heidrun Lohr
Most adults would be completely mortified by the thought of a 91 storey treehouse full of hazards and life endangering animals. The children however lapped it up!
The 91-Storey Treehouse is an adaptation of the seventh book of the Treehouse series by author Andy Griffiths and illustrator Terry Denton. It follows the story of two mates Andy (Samuel Welsh) and Terry (Teale Howie) who live in the multilevel treehouse where a lot of shenanigans go down. Said shenanigans have already been predicted by Madam Know-It-All (Samantha Young), whose booming theatrical voice and accent deck out a well rounded performance of the fortune teller character.
Andy and Terry must babysit the grandchildren of their “Big Nose” publisher, all of which are life-sized puppets manipulated by the actors in hilarious ways. Whilst trying not to press a big red button which may destroy the world everything goes pear shaped and they need the help of neighbour Jill (Rebecca Rolle) to look after the children whom have disappeared. The adventure continues with the world’s biggest whirlpool, a sandwich submarine, a desert island and my personal favourite “Barnania” universe. Where Bananas rule! Plus a dancing cheese.
Everyone under ten seemed very much engaged, often yelling out and becoming part of the mayhem. A brilliant bright set and costume (Mark Thompson) with slick lighting (Nicholas Higgins) and sound (Ross Johnston) form a backdrop for this lively children’s show. Aged 6+ it is a good fit for primary school students grade 5 and below especially if they have read the books.
If you want to know what happens when the red button gets pressed you better head on down to the Arts Centre.
Arts Centre Melbourne presents a CDP Kids Production
The 91-Storey Treehouse: Live on Stage!
by Richard Tulloch | adapted from the book by Andy Griffiths & Terry Denton
Director Liesel Badorrek
Venue: Playhouse | Arts Centre Melbourne, 100 St Kilda Road Melbourne VIC
Dates: 4 – 19 January 2020
Tickets: $26 – $39