Watching plays/performances

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Watching plays/performances

Postby mummy of 2 » Fri Oct 16, 2009 5:22 pm

I have been bringing DS1 to watch plays since Mar this year, and I very much enjoy it. On average I bring him to one play a month, subject to availability of suitable plays. I find watching plays a good way to bring the story to life for him, and it also facilitates discussion on the characters and moral of the story.

Just want to share some plays that I have brought DS1 to watch and my own personal review. Hope other parents can share on past performances, as well as any upcoming ones. These plays are suitable for 3 and 4 year olds.

Plays watched
1. Aesop's fables (by I Theatre) - too chim for DS1

2. Bear and Chicken Go Camping (by The Little Company) - Great play. DS1 learnt that you can start a fire by rubbing two sticks together.

3. The Gingerbread Man (by I theatre) - Quite good. I read the story with DS1 before watching the play. Both DS1 and DD2 can sing the song.

4. The Boy Who Cried Wolf (The Little Company) - Another great play. The wolf was hilarious. Teaches children not to lie.

5. The Little Green Frog (I Theatre) - Found it rather short and a little boring.

6. Into the Deep Deep Forest : The Nicest Egg in the World (Playtime presented by Esplanade) - The plot was simple and easy to follow.

Based on my limited experience, plays by The Little Company are of high quality, engaging, and entertaining. The Playtime series is also quite good, and tickets are cheaper as it's floor seating. For I Theatre, some are good, others are ok. It's a bit of a risk.

Have already bought tickets to watch "The Jungle Book" in November. Did not manage to buy tickts for SSO Babes Prom. Was so disappointed. Do share if you know of other interesting plays/performances.[/list][/b]

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Postby schellen » Fri Oct 16, 2009 5:34 pm

mummy of 2, tickets to babies' proms are always sold out by the time sales are open to the public.

DH and I also bring DD to musical performances. DH has brought her to "adult" SSO concerts and I have brought her to Stomp. She enjoyed all of them. Part of the problem with bringing her to plays is the schedule and ticket price so we haven't brought her to any yet. However, she has acted in a few at her CCC/BASC's concerts.

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Postby mummy of 2 » Fri Oct 16, 2009 5:40 pm

Yar I know. But I'm not SSO member leh, so can't buy during the priority sales. Hoping they will have additional show, so that I can buy the tix then.

May I know how old is your DD? I dare not bring mine to "adult" SSO conerts cos I scared he will say it's so long and he wants to go home. This happened when I tried bringing him to watch moive (G-Force) recently.

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Postby schellen » Fri Oct 16, 2009 6:02 pm

mummy of 2 wrote:Yar I know. But I'm not SSO member leh, so can't buy during the priority sales. Hoping they will have additional show, so that I can buy the tix then.

May I know how old is your DD? I dare not bring mine to "adult" SSO conerts cos I scared he will say it's so long and he wants to go home. This happened when I tried bringing him to watch moive (G-Force) recently.


Yes, we complained to the staff collecting feedback during Octoburst at the Esplanade recently about the Babies' Prom.

DD is now 7. I think I should ask DH, sashimi, to explain how he prepped her for the concert. As for Stomp, it was a loud and noisy percussion performance where many kids attended so that was no problem. We have brought her to movies before too. We prepped her with DVDs at home first and chose the movies carefully.

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Postby karmeleon » Fri Oct 16, 2009 10:40 pm

mummy of 2 wrote:Yar I know. But I'm not SSO member leh, so can't buy during the priority sales. Hoping they will have additional show, so that I can buy the tix then.

May I know how old is your DD? I dare not bring mine to "adult" SSO conerts cos I scared he will say it's so long and he wants to go home. This happened when I tried bringing him to watch moive (G-Force) recently.


You can always look out for Esplanade Beautiful Sunday concerts which is at a child-friendly time of 3pm. You should have no problem bringing your toddler in for these types of free concerts. At very most, if the poor kid starts getting restless and you're unable to hold his interest anymore, just take him/her out - it's free afterall!

I also look out for very cheap concerts (eg. S$10 or S$5), like those by National youth orchestra and maybe school concerts or such, and I'd be prepared to leave at intermission so that we don't leave that late(usually with intermission, concerts end past 930pm or even 10pm, so leaving at intermission, it'd only be like 8.30pm.

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Postby sashimi » Sat Oct 17, 2009 9:32 am

That's really a great and rewarding effort on your part, mummy of 2! I guess you must be an arty person yourself, no? :)

I have never truly learnt to like plays, even though I can appreciate them (literature grad). I'm much more of a music person. :) But thanks for your recommendations.

I realize that since your kid is below 6 (right?), eligibility is a problem. In that case, for both plays and concerts, you can also pay attention to what the various art schools are doing. For example, NUS, Republic Polytechnic, LaSalle School of the Arts, NAFA, etc. - they hold performances of both types very often. While the timing can be often inconvenient (eg. Mon 6pm), the prices are usually very affordable and seats easily available. Republic Poly happens to have a hall that is reputedly superior to the Esplanade's, so I heard. NAFA has a pretty active drama and music scene, and LaSalle regularly performs high quality lesser-known musicals in their own premises.

Eg. http://www.nafa.edu.sg/in_happenings/ev ... ctober.htm

For classical music, I've never been to the children's proms. I shouldn't really make a judgment, but I think that there are many other performances parents can brng their kids too. Eg. the free ones at Esplande concourse, which are more bite-size. For those in the west, pay attention to the schedules of NUS/Yong Siew Toh Conservatory, for example.

There is no need to hanker after this particular SSO series, and grumble when it's sold out. There really are a lot of possibilities.

Classical music is still very much (in fact I think even more today) perceived as an elitist thing in Sg, which I strongly object to. The fact that the kids' proms are often sold out before released to public sales enforces this perception. Because of this, I have lost my taste for it, honestly speaking.

Anyway, I decided to bring my DD (7) to an adult concert earlier this year. The factors to consider are:

1) Pieces played. Obviously, the "easier" to listen, the better. But I do not like to underestimate kids - they don't care whether the composer is famous or not. Whether it's Mozart or Martinu, so long as it "hits" them in the right spot, it'll work. There are tens of thousands of pieces of lesser known works which ought to appeal. The concert should appeal to you too. The concert I brought DD to featured Beethoven's Emperor piano concerto and Saint-Saens' Organ Symphony. Both melodious and spectacular works. It was a perfect combination. She loved it.

If you are unsure of the pieces - well, today, and only in our times, can you leverage youtube to test your child's reaction for free. :)

2) Pick a right spot. In the case of the Esplanade concert hall, I always aim for the balcony seats. Expensive, but worth it, when you're with a kid.

3) Bring along a pen and notebook. Don't expect your child to remain quiet. (In fact I would be rather worried if she does!) Bring along a notebook and pen, and let her write down her thoughts about the music as it is being played. You can thus conduct a silent conversation throughout. The Esplanade balcony seats make this even easier as the seats (in fact movable chairs!) are up against a thick wall, just nice for a notebook.

I hope this helps!

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Postby mummy of 2 » Sun Oct 18, 2009 9:11 pm

Eh 3pm clash with nap time leh, so i guess it's out for DD2. Only DS1 can go. Can I find the info on Esplanade Beautiful Sunday on the Esplanade website? How do you get to know about the National Youth Orchestra and school concerts? Will be keen to attend those.

You can always look out for Esplanade Beautiful Sunday concerts which is at a child-friendly time of 3pm. You should have no problem bringing your toddler in for these types of free concerts. At very most, if the poor kid starts getting restless and you're unable to hold his interest anymore, just take him/her out - it's free afterall!

I also look out for very cheap concerts (eg. S$10 or S$5), like those by National youth orchestra and maybe school concerts or such, and I'd be prepared to leave at intermission so that we don't leave that late(usually with intermission, concerts end past 930pm or even 10pm, so leaving at intermission, it'd only be like 8.30pm.

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Postby mummy of 2 » Sun Oct 18, 2009 9:16 pm

Thanks, I just thought it would be useful for those interested in brining their kids to such plays but have no idea which ones are good.

I'm not actually musically inclined tho I do like enjoy plays and musicals. I guess that's why I'm not aware of the performances you mentioned. You are right - my kids are less than 6 yrs old. DS1 is almost 4, and DD2 is 2. I have not brought DD2 to the plays I listed above, as she is quite shy and may cry, so I prefer not to take the risk.

Thanks for all the leads on concerts. Will check them out.

sashimi wrote:That's really a great and rewarding effort on your part, mummy of 2! I guess you must be an arty person yourself, no? :)

I have never truly learnt to like plays, even though I can appreciate them (literature grad). I'm much more of a music person. :) But thanks for your recommendations.

I realize that since your kid is below 6 (right?), eligibility is a problem. In that case, for both plays and concerts, you can also pay attention to what the various art schools are doing. For example, NUS, Republic Polytechnic, LaSalle School of the Arts, NAFA, etc. - they hold performances of both types very often. While the timing can be often inconvenient (eg. Mon 6pm), the prices are usually very affordable and seats easily available. Republic Poly happens to have a hall that is reputedly superior to the Esplanade's, so I heard. NAFA has a pretty active drama and music scene, and LaSalle regularly performs high quality lesser-known musicals in their own premises.

Eg. http://www.nafa.edu.sg/in_happenings/ev ... ctober.htm

For classical music, I've never been to the children's proms. I shouldn't really make a judgment, but I think that there are many other performances parents can brng their kids too. Eg. the free ones at Esplande concourse, which are more bite-size. For those in the west, pay attention to the schedules of NUS/Yong Siew Toh Conservatory, for example.

There is no need to hanker after this particular SSO series, and grumble when it's sold out. There really are a lot of possibilities.

Classical music is still very much (in fact I think even more today) perceived as an elitist thing in Sg, which I strongly object to. The fact that the kids' proms are often sold out before released to public sales enforces this perception. Because of this, I have lost my taste for it, honestly speaking.

Anyway, I decided to bring my DD (7) to an adult concert earlier this year. The factors to consider are:

1) Pieces played. Obviously, the "easier" to listen, the better. But I do not like to underestimate kids - they don't care whether the composer is famous or not. Whether it's Mozart or Martinu, so long as it "hits" them in the right spot, it'll work. There are tens of thousands of pieces of lesser known works which ought to appeal. The concert should appeal to you too. The concert I brought DD to featured Beethoven's Emperor piano concerto and Saint-Saens' Organ Symphony. Both melodious and spectacular works. It was a perfect combination. She loved it.

If you are unsure of the pieces - well, today, and only in our times, can you leverage youtube to test your child's reaction for free. :)

2) Pick a right spot. In the case of the Esplanade concert hall, I always aim for the balcony seats. Expensive, but worth it, when you're with a kid.

3) Bring along a pen and notebook. Don't expect your child to remain quiet. (In fact I would be rather worried if she does!) Bring along a notebook and pen, and let her write down her thoughts about the music as it is being played. You can thus conduct a silent conversation throughout. The Esplanade balcony seats make this even easier as the seats (in fact movable chairs!) are up against a thick wall, just nice for a notebook.

I hope this helps!

mummy of 2
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Postby karmeleon » Sun Oct 18, 2009 10:49 pm

mummy of 2 wrote:Eh 3pm clash with nap time leh, so i guess it's out for DD2. Only DS1 can go. Can I find the info on Esplanade Beautiful Sunday on the Esplanade website? How do you get to know about the National Youth Orchestra and school concerts? Will be keen to attend those.]


That 3pm timing was fine with my 5yo. And I've seen people bring their babies or toddlers in for beautiful sunday concerts as well.

SNYO - check their website or simply Sistic.com.sg

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Postby karmeleon » Sun Oct 18, 2009 10:54 pm

sashimi wrote:For classical music, I've never been to the children's proms. I shouldn't really make a judgment, but I think that there are many other performances parents can brng their kids too. Eg. the free ones at Esplande concourse, which are more bite-size. For those in the west, pay attention to the schedules of NUS/Yong Siew Toh Conservatory, for example.
!


Babies' Proms - it's really really for the "babies". It's not suitable for those above 7yrs. My kids at that age hated the babies' proms but were fine with SSO children concerts. Their complaint (since they play musical instruments) is that the Babies' Proms are way tooooooooo noisy for them to enjoy. I'm going to bring my "baby" to go join in the noise this year though.

As for the Yong Siew Toh concerts, must warn you that they are not exactly suitable for the very young. Even tho' it's free, they frown on any noise, so it might be rather stressful if you go with a restless child.

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