When I was a kid I remember the arty crafty show on TV being my favourite, fast forward to current day and my kids are equally enthusiastic for the making man of their generation. Mister Maker (otherwise known as Phil Gallagher sans spotty waistcoat) has turned making into a kid-accessible art form. With a cult following thanks to his various television series, a BAFTA nomination, over 1 million subscribers to his YouTube channel and over 1000 fans alone at his opening Sydney show this morning at Luna Park’s Big Top arena; it’s fair to say Mister Maker has made it.
Luna Park, in all its retro seaside amusement park glory, is perhaps the ideal venue for Mister Maker to kick off his return Australian tour. His effortless rapport with mini makers big and small, his larger than life persona and the bright colours of his shapes, stage hands and set give his show an almost kids holiday resort feel. (My fellow Brits will I’m sure pick up on my Butlins nod!)
Unlike other kids’ shows which tend to have a regimented start to finish timeline, the doors to the Big Top open 45 minutes ahead of the show start, inviting kids and their significant adults in to get the arty party started. Mask craft with Mister Maker’s stage companions, Jenny and co, gets mini makers well and truly in the creative spirit before they’ve even taken to their seats.
Bright and colourful, Jenny and the infamous shapes start the show, soon welcoming Mister Maker himself onstage. As in the majority of entertainment produced for kids these days, there is much in the way adult-friendly humour to keep the big kids equally engaged. Mister Maker doesn’t disappoint with humour running through from start to finish. Did you know that Circle’s favourite song is Elton John’s The Circle of Life?! And his pal Triangle is partial to a game of snooker…?!
The show brings together the wonderful elements of Mister Maker’s television show, with opportunities for mini makers to get involved onstage, titbits of art history popped in, kids’ artworks to be shown off, games, prizes and of course no show of Mr M’s would be complete without getting the audience onto their feet to really get in Shape! In fact, this tour marks a first for fans of Mister Maker as one audience member will find themselves scouted for a rather important understudy role. Finding himself a shape short of a shape sorter, Mister Maker enlisted the help of an unsuspecting groovy Dad to stand in for Rectangle during this morning’s performance prompting laughs a plenty.
Mums and Dads will I’m sure enjoy Mr M’s reminders for kids to tidy up after their crafting and I personally loved the fact that the world famous art gallery Mister Maker refers to where kids can display their artworks is of course, the fridge!
The Big Top at Luna Park will see Mister Maker take to the stage for a further four shows this afternoon and tomorrow at 11am and 1.30pm so if you’re really quick you may be still be able to scoop some tickets ($39.90-$44.90 seating dependent)*. Remember to get there 45 minutes early for doors opening and crafty pre-show fun. Sydney, your making time is almost over so you'd better, get booking!!
Mister Maker Returns continues its run with shows across Australia coming to its conclusion in Perth on 21 and 22 July. For more information and to book tickets in your city visit the website https://www.mistermakertour.com.au/.
*Mister Maker ticket holders will receive 20% off Luna Park Unlimited Rides Passes on presentation of event ticket at the Box Office.