It seems an almost universal truth that children are fascinated by dinosaurs, and my son Xander certainly adheres to that, so when I heard that Dinosaur Zoo was in the UK, I decided that a trip to see it was in order. For those not familiar with Dinosaur Zoo, it’s an Australian show that tours the world bringing the world of dinosaurs to a young – and often not so young – audience. We went to Birmingham Town Hall to watch, and the staff there were remarkably friendly even before the show started. Soon though, we had taken our seats, and our guide Sophie took us on our journey though various prehistoric creatures, mixing education with fascination and plenty of humour. Firstly, a series of dinosaur babies appeared, then various other creatures including a juvenile Tyrannosaurus Rex. There was plenty of audience participation, not limited to shouting from the seats as several of the spectators ended up on stage meeting the reptilian stars of the show close up.
After the show – almost an hour, about the limit of attention span for some younger dinosaur fans, but there were none looking bored near me – there was an opportunity to meet the baby dinosaurs and give them a pat, or even see the T-Rex on stage. This was the photo opportunity too, as the show was too good to watch to waste time taking pictures.
A photo posted by Mark Haggan (@markhaggan) on
The dinosaurs are puppets but the expert at in which they are handled means that the younger children in the audience seem convinced that these are the real thing, and even the adults are able to suspend their disbelief. As well as being excellent puppeteers, the cast are great with the audience during and after the show, making the whole event even more special.
We left with a very happy three year old who has been telling us about meeting dinosaurs ever since. Definitely worth a visit to Dinosaur Zoo if you get a chance.