Art and Performing Arts Review

Theatre review: ‘The Cat in the Hat’

By Priyanka Chand AgarwalEvents - 11 September 2012 7:00 PM

Theatre review: ‘The Cat in the Hat’

This one is for Dr. Seuss fans of all ages. In true Dr. Seuss style this play will speak to the little ones, and it speaks volumes on morality, ethics and the human spirit. 

Essentially a story of two children who are moping indoors on a rainy day, searching for something to do when in steps a cat. Unlike the feature film, in which the cat is played by a very lewd and vulgar Mike Myers, this play is endearing and fun. The story flows easily and children and adults both get the lessons it tries to preach; follow rules, act responsibly, and always listen to your inner voice of reason. In a fun yet serious way the play also touches on the childhood concerns of talking to strangers and absent parents.

All this is played out by an exemplary cast; the suave cat in the hat, and stylish suit (played by Sean Tarrant) is almost amoral: He traipses into the house and causes mayhem all in the guise of ‘having fun’. His antics get peals of laughter from the audience and he plays to the galleries with every meow and flick of his tail. He invites his playtime pals, the red-suited and blue-haired Thing 1 and Thing 2 (played by Jean Toh and Venytha Yoshiantini) who turn the house upside down running amok. There is also the children's party-pooper goldfish, a sort of baby-sitter, who acts as the voice of reason, and in this case Dr. Seuss’ lesson in morality (Played by Linden Furnell).

The sets designed by Vicki Mortimer of UK’s National Theatre are a delight, the style is illustrative like in the books and the characters interact with the props in cheeky fashion.  The scene where furniture, crockery and household items are all flying around much to the children’s chagrin is wickedly funny and had tiny tots in the audience reaching out for a grab.

The Cat in the Hat is playing at the  DBS Arts Centre from Aug 22 - Sep 30 and is recommended for 2-year olds and above.