Things to do with kids in Brisbane
Out of the Box Festival - On now!
I'm so glad that I have kids. Because I get to take them to cool stuff like the Out of the Box Festival for Children at Qpac and do loads of fun things that grown-ups aren't supposed to do. I've just spent the better part of the last two days wandering through the maze of activities that are scattered like little starbursts of adventure in and around South Bank, and I still haven't managed to see everything. There is just so much to do, and so very many ways to be inspired (and feel like a kid again). Brisbane, we are spoilt for choice.
Free activities and workstations are positioned throughout the festival space, so you can get creative in all kinds of interactive ways. The Chalk the Walk blackboards are at the perfect height for littlies to scribble works of art on the very walls of Qpac (better theirs than mine!) with colouring-in stations also provided nearby.
To celebrate 2012, the National Year of Reading, The Courier-Mail Tall Tent of Tall Tales showcases the magic of storytelling and literacy in a variety of free events for anybody and everybody to enjoy. And just to prove that Out of the Box really is for people of all ages, the eeni meeni miini moh marquee has some delightful activities for mummas and bubbas, including Baby Yoga, and Baby Loves Music & Movement.
Loads more free events are available, but it is worth getting along to some of the incredible shows that are on offer. We started our day yesterday with a visit to the adorable Invisible Me. The production is a gorgeous mix of music, Australiana, dance, and performance art about a baby emu's search for belonging. The story itself is lovely, with plenty of colour, movement and interaction to engage the children—a great introduction to live theatre for littlies, who get to sit on cushions on the floor and feel like a part of the action.
For a more vibrant theatre experience, don't miss Me and My Shadow, which we all just loved. It is a stunning show which truly captures the imagination in a way that I haven't felt since I was a kid. Me and My Shadow has the kind of wonder that I wish upon my children; it has that idealistic sense of play, magic, and creativity that makes their eyes open wide with the kind of awe that only children seem capable of bringing to a new discovery. It takes you to a place where you wish you could return to once in a while, just to remember what it is feels like to be see the world in a different light, a fresh perspective.
But if you only go to one show during the whole festival, then you must see the utterly breath-taking, The Flying Orchestra. The show is sublime—it is based on the book, written and illustrated by Queensland's Clare McFadden, brought to life through music, puppetry, and hypnotic visuals. We just loved the idea of seeing a beautiful book reproduced as live theatre, and were blown away by the result. The set design is both intriguing and clever, metamorphosing from one sequence to the next in an enchanting interpretation of the progression of life. Music is the star of The Flying Orchestra, but it is the variety and ingenuity of how it is applied that makes this show so magical. But the real majesty of The Flying Orchestra is in its ability to remain faithful to the feel and impression of the book, allowing just enough fantasy to breathe energy into the tale without taking anything away from the raw talent of the original work. The Flying Orchestra is made from the same stuff that sends dreams running wild and imagination soaring.
Out of the Box Festival for Children runs until this Sunday, so get along while you can and enjoy some good, clean, rollicking fun. And take the kids; they'll love it, too. For more details about show times and bookings, visit Qpac's Out of the Box website.