Everything Under the Moon at Harbourfront Centre

On Friday afternoon, I had a sneak peek at Harbourfont Centre’s World Stage production, Everything Under the Moon. The unique show tells the story of Idared, a honeybee, and Limbertwig, a little brown bat, as they set out together on a quest to save themselves and their species. The narrative unfolds through the use of projected images, hand-animated art, shadow puppets, and song.

The art work work is created by Toronto artist Shary Boyle, and includes both original drawings and cut-outs from vintage books from the 1950′s and 1960′s. The song-based score is written by Winnipeg musician Christine Fellows and includes an array of musical instruments – xylophone, ukelele, cello, trumpet – all set on stage alongside vocalists.

What is most interesting about Everything Under the Moon, is that it’s both beautiful and whimsical, and makes you feel nostalgic for the past and hopeful for the future.

Somehow, Boyle and Fellows make a story book come to life right before your eyes, and not with the use of 3D animation, computer graphics, or special effects. That seems almost magical.

Here are a few photos I snapped on Friday. The first two shots show a collection of overhead sheets and a projector used to reflect images on a large screen at the far back of the stage. Then, you can see Shary Boyle manipulate the images, and musician Ed Reifel warming up.

A Few Notes

The show is considered appropriate for audiences of all ages, although Harbourfront Centre suggests the minimum age as 5. I actually recommend the performance for ages 8 and older.

Running time is 50 minutes with no intermission.

Performances will be held from February 18-23 at the Enwave Theatre and tickets are $15/$10 for children.

There is a Skate & Show package available for the February 19th or 20th performances, and cost $65. The package includes 2 adult + 2 children tickets to Everything Under the Moon, 4 skate rentals, and a $15 voucher for LakesideEATS. Visit Harbourfront Centre Box Office for details.

Finally, take advantage of the opportunity to have a conversation about the performance with your children. Prior to the show, talk about theatre etiquette and read through the program notes to make for a more engaging viewing experience. After the show, talk about what your children saw on stage (musicians, singers, instruments, puppets, projected images), and how all of these elements helped shape the performance narrative. Ask what they liked and didn’t like, and why. It is always interesting to hear what children find most interesting and inspiring.

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