Ed Patrick aka Kid Carpet is a well-known and well-loved Bristol musician who has put on some absolutely cracking kids theatre shows in the past few years. I was so chuffed to be reviewing his latest offering ‘ Kid Carpet’s Noisy Nativity’ on Saturday 12th December at The Brewery Theatre with my three year old and six year old daughters.
Kid Carpet has been charged with putting on the nativity for the The Tobacco Factory, on the promise that he ‘does it properly’ and doesn’t muck about. For those of you familiar with Kid Carpet, you know that neither of these outcomes are likely. In his hands, the traditional Christmas story gets a radical makeover, with big beat songs, live special effects and lots and lots of silliness. Kid Carpet makes great use of a video camera to capture the noisy animals on their small stage and project it onto a big screen. It’s a simple concept but works beautifully. Ably assisted by his sidekick Chris who keeps things running smoothly, handles all the technology and plays a somewhat disgruntled God, the show proceeds at a frenetic pace.
Kid carpet is one of those rare performers who can put on a show for kids that the adults in the audience find just as hilarious and entertaining. At no point did we feel like this show was just for our kids, there were plenty of references and jokes that were just for us, but without having to slip into panto-esque innuendo. In fact, I would be quite happy going to this show on my own without a kid in tow. There were so many brilliant moments that it is hard to pinpoint a highlight, but the action man Star of David(Bowie) moment was inspired, and had me laughing so hard I cried a little bit. My three year old was delighted by the fact that Jesus is a hedgehog. (Best if you don’t ask). My six year old was giggling loudly at a rather more anarchic version of ‘Jingle Bells’, done to a jungle beat and with a delightfully naughty (in her eyes) word being substituted, performed by a plastic gorilla. This show is like the threesome lovechild of The Mighty Boosh, the Young Ones at their most surreal and the toys from 1970’s Playschool.
I just loved this show, as did both my girls. We sat in Marks bread afterwards talking about what we had seen, and it was clear from their responses just how enthused they were with it, recounting a particular scene and bursting into giggles. The very next day, from nowhere, my youngest started singing the Golden Eagle song. Yes, Mary and Joseph flew to Bethlehem on a golden eagle. Of course.
Don’t expect sophisticated humour, after all it is meant to be for kids. However, if comedians like Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer, Monty Python, The Boosh boys and The Goons make you laugh, this surreal and silly show should at the very least raise a giggle. This show is without a doubt, the best offering I have seen so far from Kid Carpet. Your kids will love it, and I bet you have never seen a theatre show with a musical rubber chicken machine, have you?!
Kid Carpet’s Noisy nativity is on at The Brewery Theatre until 3rd Jan 2016.
Review by Karen Blake