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ORT Report: Up, Up and Away

Up, Up and Away is a magical, creative and surprising performance for anyone of any ages. It’s a story where a young boy named Joe was so interested in the performing arts section of life, he fulfilled it with books and stories, and was intrigued what the next book may hold. No one understands him and he is unable to express how he feels… he just wants to live his life in the books he reads. It’s children’s theatre but is great fun for anyone any age to watch.

While watching the performance I found it amazing how the characters multi-role, changing their outfits, the tone of voice and the atmosphere within the room – they performed extremely well with the roles they had. The performance used a lot of physical theatre, this makes the transitions creative and effective especially to the younger children. This amazing piece of children’s theatre shows them how big their imagination can be for the creatures to be real to them. The actor who played both Josephine and the Sky girl use physicality in different ways, as the Sky girl is determined to follow the map and when she played Josephine, she lets us see how different she is. Joe’s silence communicates with the audience as I can tell the books he reads have depth into the story all through. The play was a magical story which tells us to be okay with being different.

The scenery, which was detailed but simple, included the excellent use of a crane-like mechanism which allowed both Joe and the sock thief to soar above the stage in very different ways. Joe had a weightless effect to him whereas the sock thief used his physicality to seem bouncy and weighted down, as though it was hard for him to stay up, as if the rottenness in him weighed him down. It felt almost Grinch-like, with sarcastic comments which not only made the younger generation laugh, but the adults too. As well as this, the subtle real life references and adult humour elevated the performance to a new height of entertainment and were well thought out in the script, referencing Love Island (a popular, mature program), engaging parents in the audience.

I found the play really inspiring and magical throughout, and all the characters were astonishing from beginning to end.

Article by BOA Student Megan, as part of our ORT Report scheme.