Adelaide Fringe 2017 Review:

Best of Kids’ Fringe


Let’s get to the point – kids can be assholes. They expect a certain level of professionalism, creativity and show”person”ship. This show didn’t deliver on any of those levels.

It’s unfortunate because it could’ve been so much more. The intention to deliver a snippet of the best the Fringe has on offer for kids is a good one. And when you have a room half-full of eager parents looking for ideas of shows to take their children it’s the perfect springboard to put your show front and centre in what can be a crowded and confusing space.

What isn’t cool is when the show fails because it’s obvious a group of performers from different shows rocked up to the venue and winged it. The production of the show was inconsistent. Performers asking for music to be turned down or changed mid-performance. A bubble guy repeatedly asking for air conditioning to be turned off mid-bubble blowing. Music soundtracks repeated or stalled, microphones crackling – and at one stage a rogue hula hoop nearly took out a kid in the front row.

There were moments of joy. A child’s delight when a red ball was pulled from behind his ear. A tired, yet sure fire moment. A women spinning a candy striped tube on her feet drew some gasps. And the most enjoyable part – when a couple of dudes from the crowd were forced to dance suggestively on stage, which drew some giggles.

I thanked my lucky stars I didn’t have to pay actual money to go and see this, but there were people who did. They forked out hard earned cash and dressed their small children, and drove to the venue and waited in line while their children grew bored and asked for food constantly. They chose to spend their afternoon making the effort and when they got there were given the all too often lazy “kids’ show”  experience.

I see these shows as vitally important to the future of arts in this country – to the future of Fringe events. Where young minds are given the respect they deserve and treated to upbeat, unpatronising, fun and professionally run shows. Unfortunately this one did not deliver.

Can anyone suggest some shows for kids aged 6, 8 and 10 which do?

Two out of five stars.

bigwords x