'Kate Crackerberry' a hit at St. John's LSPU Hall

Cultured kids nearly sell out LSPU Hall


Published on March 26, 2017

Kate Crackerberry, the lead character in the puppet play by the same name, currently running at the LSPU Hall. Adapted by Ruth Lawrence and directed by Lois Brown, the children’s play is a story of love, evil enchantment, fairy spells, wit and courage.

©Submitted photo

With another long, tiresome week of primary and elementary school temporarily in the plastic rearview mirrors on their Little Tikes cars, local kids settled down for a relaxing weekend, with a dash of post-nap-time pre-dinner theatre.

Putting on their best weekend duds, plus hats, mittens and scarves, of course, the cultured kids of the St. John’s Metro Area suited up their parents and headed down to the LSPU Hall on Saturday to take in “Kate Crackerberry.”

Adapted by Ruth Lawrence and directed by Lois Brown, two familiar names in the local theatre scene, the kids knew that this would be a good show.

Those unable to attend previous in-school performances of the show and also too young for debit cards urged their parents to pick up tickets before they sold out.

Smart kids.

I brought along my own young pal ,Tasha, a mere child of just 23, to take in the show. Having never seen a puppet show onstage, I was grateful to share this learning experience with her. They grow up so fast, y’know?

Based on a similarly titled Scottish folk tale, “Kate Crackerberry” tells the story of Anne and Kate, two friends who become stepsisters after their Mom and Dad marry each other.

Kate is often tasked with the errand of fetching fresh eggs, an errand that soon lands her in a stew — literally.

She emerges with a sheep’s head. The step-siblings are now faced with a bigger dilemma than parental weirdness. This darn thing won’t come off.

As Anne and Kate go through the motions of removing the sheep’s head firmly attached to Kate’s skull, they venture through the forest, encountering new people and new problems along the way.

As it goes with a children’s show, of course, the pair are successful at the end.

I will refrain from giving too much detail about the trials and tribulations involved in the somewhat complex but humorous plot line, just in case you’ve snagged a ticket for the Sunday afternoon performance.

Throughout the show, Lawrence and co-star Baptiste Neis interact with the young audience, encouraging them to share their opinions on topics pertinent to the storyline. There are even a couple of anecdotes thrown in for the adult audience members, referencing celebrities like recently deceased Chuck Berry, Irish alt-rock band The Cranberries, and more.

The performance is aided by musical interludes and sound effects by Diana Daly, as well as a projector screen, showing a shadow puppet story to illustrate the pair’s odd adventures.

I’ve touted “fun for the whole family” in previous reviews, but this may be the most apt time to use that old phrase.

And yeah, 23-year-old Tasha had a great time, clapping and laughing along with the rest of the kids.

Check out the final performance of 'Kate Crackerberry' at the LSPU Hall Sundaybat 2 p.m., and stick around after the show for the presentation of the 2016 Rhonda Payne Theatre Award.