Pinocchio is hardly a role model for children. He lies, cheats and steals. The wooden boy whose nose grows and grows when he tells fibs was given a cute makeover in the Disney film and it’s that version that most of us remember. But naughty can be nice to watch and Nick Lane’s adaptation offers a Pinocchio who learns valuable life lessons – family is important, be nice to other people, love is all you need – on his journey to becoming a human boy. Nothing fazes him whether it’s an animal Elvis impersonator, a sea monster that’s swallowed carpenter Gepetto or a fairy with turquoise hair who tells him, “Call me Janet”. Paul Robinson directs his first show as artistic director at the Stephen Joseph and if it’s a sign of things to come, the future is looking good with a colourful production that’s bright, lively, inventive, surprising and, above all, jolly good fun for children and adults alike.
To December 31.