Review: Mister Maker and The Shapes Live, Theatre Severn, Shrewsbury

It’s time to start the art – if you’ve got any energy left.

Review: Mister Maker and The Shapes Live, Theatre Severn, Shrewsbury

CBeebies star Mister Maker, played by Phil Gallagher, in Shrewsbury

That’s because Mister Maker and The Shapes is about as high octane a children’s theatre show that you will find.

Right from the word go, Phil Gallagher – who plays the colourful CBeebies star Mister Maker – had both the youngsters and grown ups involved, be it singing, clapping or dancing.

It’s just the start of what quickly became clear was a key part of the show – getting the audience involved at every opportunity.

Youngsters pre-selected from the crowd were invited on to the stage to take part in Minute Make challenges and crafty activities. 

The parents were not spared either – three brave souls were led on to the stage to make animal noises as part of one sequence. 

It led to hilarious scenes involving an impression of a spider being made to sound like a chattering monkey, and a truly ear-splitting – though surprisingly legitimate – elephant trumpet from one grandfather called Keith. 

While Mister Maker was undoubtedly the headline act – and he was more than up to the job – the format made the audience feel like stars of the show in their own right.

It continued right the way through the show, even across the interval when the audience was asked to scrunch up pieces of paper they were handed on entry that then became part of a collage of The Shapes at the start of the second half.

Speaking of The Shapes, they got the biggest roar of the day when they were awoken from their slumber and appeared on stage shortly into the second half.

The message of the show is all about getting people of all ages, “whether one, 41 or 101”, to try being arty and to have fun doing it.

It is full of humour throughout – from jokes that are aimed at the children to those appealing to the parents too. Because let’s face it, they watch CBeebies just as much.

Watching the show was an exhausting experience – especially trying to keep two excitable young children under control – but one that left everyone feeling truly exhilarated.

After four shows at Theatre Severn on Saturday and Sunday, the Mister Maker roadshow will now roll on to the north west over the next few days. But for families in Shropshire, their arty time is just beginning.

By Pete Kitchen

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