I went to see a show called Slapdash Galaxy 3d recently that made me want to write a blog post just to tell you all to go to see it. One of the most enjoyable things I’ve seen at the Edinburgh Festival in the years I’ve lived here. It wasn’t just because it was such great fun to watch, but because of the reasons why it was so enjoyable.
The show is a shadow puppet bonanza of fun and imagination, and while ostensibly for kids, nobody was laughing as much as I was. Part of that was at the kids being confused by a rocket ship and a pocket torch, part of it was because I’m a big kid myself. That’s what I loved about the show most. It was a simple and unashamed look at our imagination. It made me feel like I was eight again and watching a shadow on a wall and thinking about how it looked like a dragon, believing it might actually be one. Strangely the shadows on the walls growing up always looked like dragons until the point where I was trying to get to sleep when they began to look like monsters. I suspect my parents had a system of lights set up to make sure I was too scared to get out of bed when I’d finally got in it. I don’t blame them.
Watching Slapdash Galaxy just reinforced what I love about writing, that engagement of the imagination and the invitation you offer to others to join you. Following the adventures of a shadowy rocket ship on the wall was as enjoyable as anything I’ve seen at the festival. This was in part due to the fantastic audience engagement of the man behind the shadow puppets but also just an understanding of that part of you which never really grows up. Part of you wants to believe in space adventures, perhaps a bigger part of me than other people. How can you resist the wonders of imagination, it even has 3D! 3D imagination! Shadow puppets in 3D! That stuff will blow your mind. My mind was pretty fragile already though. Everyone I saw came out of the show with the same grin, be they adult or child. It was a big smile of people having spent an hour with their imagination.
So go see the show. But if you don’t, because you’re essentially an awful person who doesn’t like fantastic stuff, then at least go and see something else that indulges that little child inside all of us. Go see a show for the little boy or girl who used to see dragons on the wall. You wont regret it. And if you do. You’re dead inside.
Slapdash Galaxy 3D is playing daily at 16:15 as part of the Edinburgh festival until the 26th of August. Tickets here.