Get ready to meet New Zealand’s silliest clowns in The Court Theatre’s silent children’s show, A Paintbox of Clowns.
Writer and director Dan Bain has created a trio of silly and silent clowns, appropriately named Red, Blue and Green to entertain all types of children – and grown-ups.
Without any dialogue Bain has created a show that will have the kids bursting with excitement these school holidays.
“The thing I love about this show is it’s one of the few situations where, as a four-year-old, as a five-year-old, as a six-year-old, you’re smarter than the performers. The characters are so stupid that the show is designed for the audience to get ahead of them. The audience knows what they should do and it just drives them crazy, shouting at them. I bill it as a silent show for loud children because the characters are silent, but everything about it is designed to activate the audience into just shouting stuff out - that’s how it’s exciting.”
A Paintbox of Clowns is returning to The Court’s mainstage after its original debut in 2010 as the first silent show of its kind at the theatre.
Bain acknowledges that the show is a little different to The Court’s usual kids show offerings: “There’s a long history at this theatre of kids shows being made by people who are very verbally clever – so they’ve always succeeded really well at that back and forth kind of banter. But I don’t know if kids are that into that, or if all kids are into that, or if for the age range that we often have, that it’s the most successful mode for them.”
Red, Blue and Green each have three distinct personalities – Red is brave, Blue is smart and Green is, well, hungry. Bringing the trio to life are Monique Clementson, on the back of her starring role in Puff the Magic Dragon; Millie Hanford, a Court Jester most recently seen in young-adult improv-comedy show The Early Early Late Show and Nicky Marshall, a well-known Scared Scriptless musician who is making his professional acting debut in the show.
The trio’s clowning antics come directly from Bain’s own experience with the artform, as a former student of the CircoArts programme at the Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology where he was tutored by Sam Wills - aka Tape Face.
With plenty of problems for the clowns to solve - and for the kids to yell out the answers - A Paintbox of Clowns is a fantastic, interactive show for the children to get involved with these holidays.
“The cool thing about watching this show as a kid is that experience of knowing the right thing to do first and being empowered to be the smart one in the relationship.” Bain says. “In so many shows for kids the show is the teacher and the show is in charge – the show is cleverer than the audience. So, I think it’s funny that the show is so stupid and doesn’t know what to do – the audience have to be the clever ones.”
“You’ll never get the experience that you’ll get from this show from the television.”
Red, Blue and Green will be clowning around at The Court Theatre from 16 – 28 April 2018, with a relaxed performance of the show being hosted on 28th April, 11am. All tickets are $10.