Sky in the Pie
Crescent – The Vaults
Reviewed – 6th March 2020
“a fun, genuinely child-friendly show”
Sky in the Pie is a surreal, dreamlike experience, and the latest offering from The Feathers of Daedalus Circus. This multi-talented company, under the direction and writing of Joanna Vymeris, has created a children’s show (12 years and under) that combines the poetry of Roger McGough with music, acrobatics and eye-catching design. For all its charm, however, Sky in the Pie does suffer from a quality common to dreams—especially the enjoyable ones—that of a lack of focus, and a story that drifts from moment to moment.
The show starts promisingly enough with a young girl waking up and getting ready to go to school. Dry ice drifts across the stage, signifying a transition from dreaming. As she leaves, her enchanting bedroom—complete with a comfortable bed, with the moon and a star hanging from the ceiling for decoration—unfolds into desks, chairs, and the whole space transforms into a much more prosaic classroom. School friends and her teacher enter. From there, we observe the events of the girl’s day, from learning to lunch, and the story of another girl who turns herself into a book. When our heroine returns home, it is to find “sky in the pie” for dinner, and then bed with her “caterpillow” for comfort, as she listens to a story about scary scarecrows. (The scarecrows then appear to assure her that they scare crows, not kids.) The dry ice returns, and the girl prepares herself for sleep, and then another day at school. The action is throughout Sky in the Pie is accompanied by a running commentary, in rhyme, from the
performers. Questions are asked, statements are made, like, “I wish I could remember my name” but answers, if necessary, are often solicited from the audience. We are all drawn into the dream.
This should prove popular with primary school kids, and this is a fun, genuinely child-friendly show. There’s lots of impressive acrobatics, also juggling, riding on a unicycle—even a moment or two with puppets. But the skills of The Feathers of Daedalus Circus are still a bit rough around the edges, and the set design is really the strongest element. If the company can find a way to create plots with lots of suspense, and memorable characters, they’ll build a strong following. It’ll be fun to follow their progress.
Reviewed by Dominica Plummer