A young girl, annoyed by being made fun of by her seven older brothers, joins in the family’s evening game of throwing stones and unintentionally shatters the sun from the sky, with obviously global consequences. Six months later, with the world constantly dark, she decides it’s up to her to fix what she’s broken—and so starts out on a quest to find all the pieces and put the sun back up in the sky.
With an enticing mixture of the seemingly mundane and the slightly scary, A Stone’s Throw is an ideal hour’s entertainment for under fives
This delightful show is simply and inventively presented, using a mixture of props, puppets and overhead projections to tell the girl’s fairy-tale adventures. An early example is the girl’s seven brothers being represented by a variety of objects you can buy in any supermarket, while she herself is a small satsuma; this echoes the bright orange coat which performers Isy Sharman and Hannah Jarrett-Scott take turns to wear as the character. Amazingly, this constant switching of the girl’s role between the two actors isn’t at all confusing; indeed, it helps keep the show lively for its younger audiences.
Like any fairy tale, there are moral messages to be found: most obviously, about the need to take responsibility for our actions, and also to look after our environment. As the girl sails with a pirate, helps a sea monster and wanders into the jungle with an absent-minded wildlife documentary filmmaker, we see a variety of all-too-human reactions to the loss of the sun—from a Blitz-spirit “adapt or die” lighthouse keeper, who keeps her light going by running on a giant wheel, to the stockbroker who insists that fragments of the sun are highly profitable.
With an enticing mixture of the seemingly mundane and the slightly scary, A Stone’s Throw is an ideal hour’s entertainment for under fives, and thankfully has at least some humour for the grown-ups too. Most importantly, however, the story’s resolution isn’t simply the wave of a magic wand; we’re reminded it will take a lot of work to put the world back together again afterwards, and that’s a lesson well worth us all remembering.