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The Boy Who Cried Wolf (York)

Daniel Meyers finds "a delicate and, at times, poetic production" at York Theatre Royal

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Matthew Hamper as Silas in The Boy Who Cried Wolf.
© Brian Slater

Mike Kenny and Tutti Frutti's retelling of the classic fable, The Boy Who Cried Wolf, is a delicate and, at times, poetic production.

It is told through the eyes of Silas, an imaginative and frankly lazy young boy, who is pressed into looking after the family's sheep once the annual mountain climb becomes too much for his aging Grandfather. Preoccupied with the fun times being had back down in the village and particularly by his Mother's chances of finally winning the annual jumper knitting competition, Silas concocts his infamous lie to get himself off the mountain as quickly as possible.

The cast of three play multiple parts (and instruments), including the scene-stealing sheep, with enthusiasm and thoughtfulness. Mike Kenny's script is typically stout and believable and Wendy Harris' direction adds an ethereal lyricism to the unfolding story.

It could be argued that the moral bite is rendered a tad toothless by a softened ending to the story, probably included to not disturb the very youngest of the audience, but, as ever with a production aimed at this demographic, it's only really appropriate to base my review on their reaction, which on this occasion was engaged, loud and far from sheepish.