Octonauts and the Deep Sea Volcano Adventure
CBeebies underwater hit goes live
Any theatre director trying to recreate the look and feel of a TV show has their work cut out. Especially one as well loved as CBeebies favourite, The Octonauts. Add to that the deep sea location and it’s really time to think outside the box.
‘A lot of the TV show takes place under water, but the characters themselves are not swimming in it: they’re in the Octopod,’ says the show’s director, Richard Lewis. ‘So their movements can be as they are in the programme, and we create an underwater world in the background with projections. The harder bit is when they go outside the Octopod, but there are a variety of tricks we can use to get that underwater world across, such as puppetry, UV light sequences and characters walking on the sea bed slowly. I have to say, it works brilliantly.’
As Lewis points out, however, a trip to the theatre should bring more than simple replication. The opportunities that a live show presents for audience interaction and communal viewing offer young viewers a different experience to the one in their living room.
‘Audiences want that familiarity but they also want something different,’ says Lewis. ‘Otherwise they wouldn’t have come to the theatre, they would have put on a DVD. So it’s about finding that balance.’
King’s Theatre, Edinburgh, Sat 4–Sun 5 Apr; King’s Theatre, Glasgow, Wed 20–Thu 21 May.