Review by Laura Money
If you are looking for something different to do with your children this school holidays, go and see The Red Balloon. Presented by Black Swan Theatre Company in conjunction with the Awesome Festival, this enchanting tale of friendship and love will lift the hearts of all who see it.
Based on the Academy Award winning short film of the same name, The Red Balloon follows the story of Parisian schoolboy, Pascal (Dylan Christidis and Rory McLaughlan) who befriends a large rubber red balloon – that seems to have its own sentience. He charmingly takes us through his life and hometown with balloon in tow, proving that there is beauty in everything.
Set and costume designer India Mehta‘s designs really tie everything together, as it is such a visually impressive piece of theatre. The set consists of two simple structures that act as housing, the school, and the church; a few rubbish bins, and a backdrop with simple clouds and sky projected on it to indicate Pascal’s journey through his city. The aesthetic is truly sensational, especially when the costumes of the cocky and brash cat, the laid back pencil-mustachioed rat, and the carrier pigeon pigeon. Complete with 1950s human clothes, the look is both romantic and enduring.
Hilary Bell‘s adaption of The Red Balloon is the perfect injection of art, humour, love, courage, friendship and escapism for children and adults alike.
The Red Balloon is playing at Studio Underground, State Theatre Centre of Western Australia in conjunction with the Awesome Festival from 1st – 17th October 2015.