Rhubarb brings hol­i­day fun for kids

Bush Telegraph - - Bush Telegraph - By DAVE MUR­DOCH

In­ter­na­tion­ally renowned duo Mary Kip­pen­berger and Pe­ter Charl­ton-Jones, col­lec­tively known as Rhubarb, re­turned to the Tararua li­braries dur­ing the school hol­i­days with ex­tra fam­ily now brought into their act — daugh­ter Kate and her part­ner Danny Pri­est­ley.

They en­ter­tained at Eketa¯ huna and Pahiatua July 11 draw­ing huge crowds of chil­dren — the big­gest Mary has ex­pe­ri­enced in Eketa¯ huna in 22 years of tour­ing.

They re­turned to en­ter­tain Dan­nevirke and Woodville chil­dren on July 12, again draw­ing en­thu­si­as­tic au­di­ences.

Their mix of story-telling and pup­petry in­vited con­stant chil­dren in­ter­ac­tion, and the chil­dren showed real tal­ent, Mary said. She has been tour­ing for many years with Pe­ter. This year’s tour takes in 25 venues start­ing in Gis­borne and trav­el­ling south though Napier and the Tararua, fin­ish­ing in the last week of the hol­i­days.

Mary has a great ca­pac­ity to fas­ci­nate the chil­dren with sto­ries about solv­ing prob­lems like how the old pos­sum man­aged to catch frogs for food in his old age and find­ing a princess a hus­band.

Danny showed his ex­pe­ri­ence and tal­ent drawn from be­ing lead singer in a Syd­ney Ir­ish band Riogh and many years in mu­si­cal theatre.

His pup­petry and singing backed by Kate on a bodhran drum, about items such as the Wooten Wood We¯ ta¯ and pro­nounc­ing Ma¯ ori names had the chil­dren in­volved, so much so the hour seemed to go in a flash.

Tararua Li­braries Win­ter Warm­ers Pro­gramme con­tin­ues through the schools again next term.

Danny Pri­est­ley op­er­ates Ma­malia the pup­pet much to the amuse­ment of the chil­dren at the Dan­nevirke Li­brary.

The chil­dren have phrases which help put words to the song.

The choices in the chal­lenge to find the princess a hus­band did not im­press the princess.

Mary Kip­pen­berger helps the chil­dren teach Aussie Danny the Ma¯ ori vowel sounds.

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