Features/Kids/What to SEE/Multi-arts

Spring into the school holidays

21 September 2023

From Awesome activities to magical nannies, there are so many marvellous ways to have a jolly holiday, writes Julie Hosking.

Whether your child loves to be part of the creative process or simply soak up the wonders of those who make magic on stage and off, we’ve found something to keep them thoroughly entertained this school holidays – and beyond. 

Children will enjoy the buzz of making their own bee puppet. Photo supplied

The Queen Bee, Spare Parts Puppet Theatre 
23-30 September @ Ellie Eaton Theatre, Claremont Showground 

After putting on a show at the Showgrounds about the joys of Show Day in the April school holidays, it seems only fitting that Spare Parts Puppet Theatre perform during the Perth Royal Show. Hard to believe given how much children love the Show and Spare Parts that this is the first time they’ve ever done so. The Queen Bee is part hands-on activity and part performance, with children invited to make their own bee puppet and then head into the Ellie Eaton Theatre for a buzzing time. There are four sessions every day from 10.30am. 

Music making is just one of the creative hubs at Awesome Festival. Photo supplied

Awesome Festival, Various 
26-30 September @ Perth Cultural Centre 

We’ve already shared some of the details about the shows coming to this year’s Awesome Festival, but there’s so much more. Do your kids like writing and drawing? Get them some hands-on tips from illustrator and author James Foley. Interested the stars, the planets and music? Take them on a sensory journey with Space Music. There are storytelling sessions with authors Kelly Canby and Katie Stewart, while Isobel Bevis leads a special dual-language storytime. There are also community concerts every day at 1pm and art tours to explore. And don’t forget the Creative Hubs, where artists will teach the kids how to get crafty, make music, get their hands dirty and generally have a great time.  

Take the kids on an aural journey to outer space. Image supplied

Classic adventures: Outer Space, WASO 
14 October @ Perth Concert Hall 

Dress as your favourite superhero, alien or spaceman and listen to the music that carries them off to infinity and beyond! This family concert features music from iconic films that take us to (or from) outer space, including E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial and Star Wars, Toy Story and Superman. Though the school holidays will be over, the fun doesn’t have to end. And what better way to spend a Saturday afternoon than with the stars? There are two sessions at 2pm and 3.30pm. 

The children’s bedroom comes alive in ‘Mary Poppins’. Photo: Daniel Boud

Mary Poppins, Disney & Cameron Mackintosh 
Until 22 October @ Crown Theatre 

Mary Poppins, to quote the nanny herself, is practically perfect in every way. This stunning musical production will put a smile on your dial and a spring in your step whether you’re 10 or 100. The timeless story of the magical nanny who takes the Banks family, not just the children, in hand has been given a dazzling makeover without losing a jot of charm. You’ll be singing Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious all the way home.  

‘Alec and Evie and the Forever Falling Rainis all about friendship. Photo supplied

Alex and Evie and the Forever Falling Rain, every other theatre company 
21-30 September @ the Studio, Blue Room Theatre 

Yes, this is also part of this year’s Awesome Festival, but we couldn’t resist a shoutout to this charming show that first won our hearts back in January 2022. Written by Sophie Minissale, it’s all about friendship – why you need friends, how you make them, how to keep them and how to mend fences when the bonds break – and told with a lot of wit and warmth. Seesaw’s co-managing editor Rosalind Appleby described it as “a heartwarming mix of humour, storytelling and endearing characters” while our young reviewer Hannah Peterson said it was “like walking into a story book”. 

Enter a labyrinth of light, air and sound in the Arborialis Luminarium. Photo supplied

Arborialis Luminarium, Architects of Air 
23 September – 8 October @ Fremantle Arts Centre 

Inspired by the natural world, this enormous maze of light, air and sound is bound to entrance all who enter. Created by the UK’s Architects of Air, the glowing labyrinth of interconnected domes is inspired by trees and its expansive canopies – stretching 45 metres by 35 metres – are designed to make you feel like you’re wandering through a forest. As you navigate the twists and turns, through tunnels and domes, daylight seeps through the fabric, creating dazzling colours and patterns. All set to spiritual music, Arborialis sounds as enchanting as any fairytale wood. Open daily, children under two are free. 

Illusions of the Mind, Adam & Selina 
5 October @ Goldfields Arts Centre, Kalgoorlie; 15 October @ Mandurah Performing Arts Centre; 10 November @ Regal Theatre 

Swedish magicians Adam and Selina, who now call Perth home, are bringing their mind-bending tricks back to a theatre near you in the coming months. Suitable for ages 12 and up, Illusions of the Mind promises mental manipulation, mind-reading and psychological illusions. The siblings also run a Magic School, which has recently launched its first online course, Discovering Magic. With more than 40 videos ranging from two to five minutes and 30 beginner magic tricks, it could be just the thing to bring out the inner performer in your kids. For children aged eight and up. See the website for details. 

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Author —
Julie Hosking

A journalist with more words to her name than she can count, Julie Hosking has worked for newspapers, magazines and online publications in Melbourne and Perth. She has been a news editor, travel editor, features editor, arts editor and, for one terrifying year, business editor, before sanity prevailed and she landed in her happy place - magazines. If pushed (literally), she favours the swing.

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