The Wider Earth, Dead Puppets Society @ The Natural History Museum

Written by David Morton
Presented by The Dead Puppets Society
Currently booking until Sunday 30 December 2018

It’s hard to picture a more suiting play to be the first presented at the Natural History Museum’s new theatre space: a visually stunning educational romp through Darwin’s first voyage on the HMAS Beagle.

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With intricate, elegant puppetry, vivid projections, an exciting, mobile set and a sweeping cinematic musical score, the production is impeccably put together. Bradley Foster portrays the 22-year-old Darwin as an innocent, excitable man, immediately engaging the audience with his enthusiasm while he tangles with the challenges of his discoveries.

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There’s some scientific and historical content, some discussion of the impact of the research being portrayed, but there’s not much depth to it – this play would serve as an excellent introduction to Darwin’s studies, rather than an analysis of them. However, it is a stunning production, bringing to life the exotic Galapagos and the rich, simple emotion of awe we feel when looking at something unique and beautiful. I would recommend this show to people of all ages looking for an edifying spectacle.

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