Little Angel, The Giraffe the Pelly and Me

Review in Issue 21-1 | Spring 2009

One of Roald Dahl’s celebrated books is brought to magical life at the Little Angel by director/designer Peter O’Rourke and his team of excellent puppeteers. The story sees our hero, Billy, gazing wondrously at an old abandoned house which, rumour has it, used to be a sweet shop. In O’Rourke’s design, the house is a beautifully crafted wooden creation with edges sticking out every which way and suggesting the distinct possibility that life won’t be too long arriving.

And indeed it does arrive – in the form of three gorgeous puppets: the giraffe (complete with extendable neck), the pelican and a tiny, blue monkey. These animals have created a ladderless window washing company, but have yet to make any money and are therefore incredibly hungry – so they enlist the help of Billy as their business manager.

There are some wonderful set pieces, including the entrance of a massive Rolls Royce and its occupier: butler of the richest man in the land with the longest, spindly legs imaginable. The highlight of this enjoyable and charmingly performed piece comes with the introduction of a wanted burglar, a fantastically surreal puppet whose body bends over double and who is pursued by every character possible in a hilarious and exciting chase sequence.

It is the surreal quality of the story which O’Rourke’s production doesn’t quite nail on the head, and there are some overlong and slow musical numbers. Overall, however, the Giraffe and the Pelly and Me put a contented smile on my face and is thoroughly recommended.

Presenting Artists
Presenting Venue
Date Seen
  1. Dec 2008

This article in the magazine

Issue 21-1
p. 33