I am always looking for new and different things to do with my boys. While I love the whole museum/ playground/ playspace scene, I also like finding things that are a little out of our ordinary outing routine. If you are in these same shoes, you should definitely check out the new production of the Chicago Children’s Theatre, Dot and Ziggy, at the beautiful Victory Gardens Theater in Lincoln Park.
The show really started as we were standing in the lobby, getting some last minute snacks ( a must when you have driven to the city at lunchtime with 2 toddler boys). Dot (played by Roni Geva) is a lovable ladybug who encounters Ziggy (played by Don Darryl Rivera), a sweet skunk who loves everything that is opposite of what Dot loves. The two characters start the play by leading a processional of toddlers from the lobby to the performance space with some simple music that more than peaks the curiosity of all. The theater is a bright, cheerful room with nothing but 4 colorful carpet triangles for us all to sit on. The freedom to sit on the floor was such a brilliant move. What toddler wants to be confined to a seat for 45min? (Or what mama of toddlers either?)
The play itself was beyond adorable. The actors did such an amazing job of engaging the entire audience, ages 0 to 30+, and bringing this tender story to life. Dot and Ziggy argue about everything. He has a home that is dark and dry while her home is warm and sunny and wet. She likes things in and up while he prefers out and down. But with the help of wise spider, they realize the power of sharing and friendship and enjoying the things they have in common instead of the things that make them different. Along the way, they have some very fun songs and games (including the HokeyPokey and the EensyWeensySpider) to keep the kids engaged and following along. As the show ended with a beautiful original song, they fill the room with bubbles much to the delight of a room full of babies, toddlers and preschoolers. The colors are bright, the songs and rhymes are catchy and the characters quickly find their way into your heart with their lovable nature and endearing performances. It was perfect, really.
I didn’t know what to fully expect before we got there. But truthfully, we had an amazing time. The boys LOVED the show and I did too. It was casual enough that they could squirm around and dance a bit without being disturbing. But yet, it was so well thought out and executed that I felt we were getting a true theater experience. The action moved all around the room and my boys’ eyes just tracked them from one side to the other, watching and interacting and grining from ear to ear. It was SO worth the drive downtown and walk in the rain. I would go again in a heartbeat.
So if you are looking for something a little different from your normal playdate routine, I can’t recommend this enough. The production runs now through June 26, 2001. Performance times are 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday; 10 a.m. and Noon on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Tickets to Dot & Ziggy are normally $16 weekdays; $18 weekends. But use this discount code for your tickets: MOMDZ -$2 off tickets throughout the run. If you bring your playgroup to all watch the show together, you can get a discounted group rate for tickets.
It is charming and entertaining, and a break from the normal routing. Love it!!
I did receive complimentary tickets for myself and my boys to the show, but the opinions expressed here are all mine and 100% sincere. It is an amazing show that I think all should see.