With a smile, a wave and a warning, you are ushered into the world of Grimmsneyland.
Finnian Gee and her seven year-old brother, Elliott were transported to the land of fairy tales to meet fantastic, colourful characters brought to life by Andsoforth Junior. This is their story.
It’s in a dark corridor lit by star-like lights where we are first sent into space; the light at the end of the tunnel revealing a bar lit by the four mirrors on the back wall and planets above our heads.
Fairy Bob, a Fairy Godfather in-training, greets us brightly before disappearing to allow us to buy refreshments in preparation for the journey ahead, returning once everyone is gathered and waiting. He greets us before introducing us to the keeper of the portal, Mirror Mirror, whom we need to wake. Mirror Mirror is known for being hard to wake, Fairy Bob tells us, and it is only when the kids have shouted his name at the top of their lungs that he appears, wearing a black suit and a mask made of shards of mirror, dancing down the starry hallway.
We are then taught how to act like the villagers of Grimmsneyland so we don’t scare the characters we’re about to meet before we’re allowed through Mirror Mirror’s portal and into a dimly lit corridor leading to a slide.
A blue ball pit awaits us at the end of the slide. There’s a gasp from behind us, and we turn to see the Little Mermaid – or, as she’s called here in Grimmsneyland, Mariah Mackerel Mermaid – standing in front of a large shell that lights up the mirror-walled room.
Ribbons of crepe paper seaweed dangle from the ceiling, breaking up the light from a single square in the roof, and we sit in the “water” as Mariah tells us about how she lost her way home two days ago and needs our help to find her map, which is hidden around the room. The kids throw themselves immediately into the task and solve the puzzle in no time, after which Mariah gives us a lesson in singing to show her thanks, advising us that it’s always best to ask for help if you need it; a lesson that children of all ages need to learn. After this, she shows us to the next portal, through which we will meet Sleeping Beauty.
Sleeping Beauty’s room is almost overwhelmingly pink, wide and tall with giant paper flowers stuck on the walls and a big pile of cushions in a corner which we’re encouraged to take and sit on. At first glance, the room is empty – until, that is, we look up. Sleeping Beauty rests in a “glass” bed frame hanging from the ceiling and connected to the ground by a golden ladder, which Fairy Bob helps her down. In thanks, she offers us all “filtered lychee soda”, which we all discover very quickly is just water. Fairy Bob, as well as many of the kids, see through the scam, and then Sleeping Beauty, or Light, tells us about how her kingdom is in debt and how she’s had to start scamming people with “filtered lychee soda” in order to earn money to pay off the bills. Fairy Bob thinks for a while, then spots a lemon inside one of the giant flowers, presenting it to Light. This lemon juice has a refreshing taste, and it grows in the flowers right in this room!” Fairy Bob says, in his excited manner. Now you can sell the lemon juice instead of scamming people out of their money! Light is delighted (pardon the pun), and teaches us a dance from her kingdom in thanks before sending us off to the next kingdom with a parting message: there’s always a right way to do things and a wrong way to do things, and even if the right way is harder, it’s the right thing to do and will be rewarded in the end.
The next person we meet is Cinderella’s Fairy Godmother, Fairy Bob’s superior, who asks us how Fairy Bob is doing. We tell her how well he’s been guiding us around so far, and the Fairy Godmother, or Febrezia, is so pleased that she promotes Fairy Bob to the position of fully-fledged Fairy Godfather before breaking into song and telling us the story of how she didn’t really do any magic to make Cinderella’s dream come true, but just worked hard and repaid kindness where it was due.
After the energetic song is over, Febrezia tells us to write our wishes down on pieces of paper on the tables of the little kitchen before we leave to meet the next and final character, Snow White.
One of the kids was dressed up as Snow White too, which made for a funny moment when Snow White stopped in front of her and looked very puzzled before spotting an apple hanging off one of the bamboo poles. Fairy Godfather Bob, seeing that it’s a poisonous apple, warns her, but Snow White misunderstands him and thinks he’s trying to catch her, which leads to a very entertaining chase before Fairy Godfather Bob manages to tell Snow White that only the golden apples are safe to eat, and we need to help her get the golden apple so she can eat it. The kids are asked to help, and when we finally get the apple down, Snow White tells us about her kingdom and how she misses the people but it’s not safe for her to be there any more. Kindly, Fairy Godfather Bob tells us that no matter where we are, we’ll be able to find people we like, and asks us to show Snow White that we’re just like the villagers in her kingdom.
After a touching farewell song sung by Snow White and Fairy Godfather Bob, we are sent on our way back through the starry corridor and into the bar we started at, thanked for our help in making Bob a Fairy Godfather and given some commemorative stickers before we finally said goodbye to Grimmsneyland.
(Note on the video: The Tales of Grimmsneyland was originally an adult-oriented show and the video was promoting the original show, so it was a little different from how it was in the video.)
The Tales of Grimmsneyland was a very family-friendly show and appealed to kids, boys and girls, between the ages of 3 to 10 with colourful sets and plenty of audience interaction, as well as jokes and puns that had the kids giggling and the parents chuckling along.
It was surprisingly active and taught the kids a lot of valuable lessons. Kids who have a creative and curious mind would enjoy shows like this very much, and the adults seemed to enjoy it as well.
One reservation I might have is that the show involved moving through small spaces, and there were a number of flights of stairs to get up to the venue, so it would not be convenient for wheelchairs and strollers.
Organiser : Andsoforth Junior by Andsoforth
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Text and pictures by Finnian Gee.
Thanks Finn, for an extremely informative and detailed review ! SingaporeforKids is for kids and soon, hopefully, a lot of the content will be from and by kids as well. This is a great start !!