Nobody Owns the Moon," now showing at 10am & 1pm these school holidays, is a production based on the book by Tohby Riddle and carefully adapted to puppetry by the late Noriko Nishimoto and Michael Barlow.
Performances are reasonably short or well timed, vibrant and will keep little onlookers entertained. They combine puppets, performers and props on a larger stage, adding in the conventional "Punch & Judy" puppet theatre 'box.'
The story surrounds the lives of absent friends Clive the Fox played by Jessica Lewis and Humphrey the Donkey acted by Shirley Van Sanden. Clive is slinky, clever and has a steady, repetitive job. Humphrey tries extremely hard, but is slow and clumsy. He can't hold down a job and has no home.
When circumstances cause them to find each other again, a mysterious blue envelope also appears, changing their perspectives on one magical night. A devious, crafty Crocodile performed by Geoff Kelso seeks to buy the moon and the very city they live in.
Yvan Karlsson, a street entertainer and narrator of the show, guides in an upbeat, rhythmic dance with his sidekick marionette Bear and throughout every step doesn't lose his head with pigeon's in toe.
Even at my mid age I was captivated by the symmetry, cheerfulness, yet also gloominess of the whole theatrics. This is probably not an event teenagers would be interested in, although it may hold their attention some of the time.
There is an interesting display of various puppets to see ahead of time and a colouring-in section for the kids. 'Adopt A Puppet' and the Holiday Workshops are also worth enquiring about at the booking office.
Another reason to arrive earlier is the unpredictable parking in Fremantle. We found the easiest place to park was on the corner of Cantonment and Queen Street. This is just a short walk to the Spare Parts Puppet Theatre, local cafeterias and souvenir shops.
I love Performing Arts for children - I used to try to do something like this once a month with my son, when he was little - I used to say 'to give him a bit of culture' - well worth it, helps them to appreciate the arts.