Why should adults have all the fun at the theater? A space inside the Woodruff Art Center has been temporarily transformed into a performance area, art installation and playscape for children newborn to age 2.
Blub, Blub is a world premiere written and directed by artist Park Cofield (who you might remember also created the delightful adaption of The Red Balloon for Théâtre du Rêve). Cofield said he was approached by the Alliance Theatre a year ago to create the piece.
“The Alliance said if they were going to fulfill the mission of serving audiences from age 1 to 101, they wanted to embrace content for the youngest of the young,” Cofield said.
Cofield visited preschools and played with infants and babies to see what they responded to visually and sonically and began to formulate a concept that would also be theatrical for the grownups. An unused gallery space in the Woodruff functions as the “stage” for Blub, Blub.
A 1950s-styled sychnronized swimmer leads visitors into the underwater world of Blub, Blub and encourages parents and caregivers to play with their children. The babies are given little shells to wear (hermit crab, turtle) and as they crawl around, they become part of the performance, too. Music, bubbles and toys are also part of the immersive experience.
“We really wanted parents to learn to play with their kids,” Cofield said. “It also gives the children possibly their first opportunity to be around other children.”
Blub, Blub continues through Aug. 2 on Saturdays at 9:30 a.m., 10:30 a.m. and 11:30 am.; Sundays at 1 p.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for children 6 to 17, and free for children 5 and under. The Blub, Blub installation is also open to the public for free exploration and playing from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. during the week. For more information, visit alliancetheatre.org/blubblub.