Theatre Review: Bosco at the Everyman, Cork

The Bermuda Triangle; the Shroud of Turin: what makes Trump that particular shade of orange — there are many mysteries in this world, but I’ve solved one that’s been puzzling Irish people for generations. Hold on to your hats, boys and girls, I deduce Bosco is a boy.

Theatre Review: Bosco at the Everyman, Cork

The famous redhead travelled Leeside to star in ‘Hansel & Gretel’ at the Everyman. And Bosco played the part of Hansel. Not Gretel, Hansel. Set your faces to stunned.

The distinct opening theme tune starts the show, that jingly jangly music that was the backdrop to all the mammies and daddies’ childhoods. We’re there to recapture that special feeling and to pass it on to our kids. The cheeky little mophead has us in the palm of his fabric hand from the get-go. “Hello, boys and girls! Are you delighted to see me? Ow my head! I was sooo excited when I saw you I banged my head!” Roars of laughter as Bosco flies around the garden backdrop bashing his head off shrubbery.

I had forgotten what a little rascal Bosco was when he was on our screens back in the day. From his “I’m a featherhead” song to driving the witch to distraction by calling her carrot nose, Bosco has all ages enthralled. Bosco has had three voices down the years. Originally it was Jonathan Ryan in 1979. When RTÉ put the show into full-time production in 1980, Miriam Lambert took over and from 1981 onwards, it was Paula Lambert.

And it’s Paula who puts on this charming show. We have three backdrops (the forest at night is especially lovely), lots of support characters and constant interaction with the audience. As Bosco chats with ladybirds, foils a “woolly bully” of a crow and teaches us about metamorphosis via a cute caterpillar and a cheeky butterfly, he has earned a new generation of fans. And that’s before we show them the magic door.

Slapstick, silly and utterly spectacular from start to finish.

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