Stick by Me

We all remember the feeling of temptation to open the box that we’re not supposed to open as a small child. Judging by his excellent performance in Stick By Me, Andy Manley does too. On a minimal but hugely effective set, he goes on a complete adventure with a cast of other characters – all of them lolly sticks.

Stick by Me is not to be missed

Both the materials and Manley’s performance perfectly invoke the gestures and attitudes of the play of young children. He has a chair, a school desk with a top that lifts, a cardboard box, and a couple of pillars covered in rolls of tape. With these few but well-used props and the titular sticks, Manley conjures a whole world of play, friendship, loss, fear, and discovery.

His depiction of the trepidation when faced with new things, and the irresistible temptation of opening boxes one isn’t supposed to open, were particularly impressive and resonant with the young audience members. Proving their engagement, several children of various ages in the audience kept up a running commentary, including one girl not more than two who repeatedly wanted to know “what’s in the box?” as Manley worked himself up to opening it.

Manley is supported by fantastic music and sound design from Will Calderbank. The music is well used but not overbearing, and the moments of silence and incredibly fun and precise sound effects not only drove the plot and character development of the sticks, but also added immeasurably to the overall performance. The use of materials – especially tape – in childlike ways was inspired. Who among us wouldn’t love to use up a whole role of tape just for the fun of it?

Stick by Me is not to be missed by children or anyone who was once a child. The memory of creating a whole imaginary world out of the bare minimum of materials is something we all share, and Andy Manley brings that memory to wonderful life.

Reviews by Alex Bailey Dillon

Zoo Southside

Too Pretty to Punch

★★★★★
ZOO Playground

Progress

★★★★
Zoo Southside

Staged

★★★
Assembly Rooms

La Galerie

★★★★
Underbelly’s Circus Hub on the Meadows

Le Coup

★★★
Underbelly, Bristo Square

Backbone

★★★★★

Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £600,000 to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now

Performances

Location

The Blurb

‘Charming, delightful, inventive’ ***** (TheWeeReview.com). A quirky, new show about friendship and play, and the importance of treasuring little things. Created by Andy Manley and Ian Cameron, co-creators of international hit show White. ‘…this is a joyful and funny show…’ **** (Guardian). ‘Physical comedy and no shortage of laughs for the kids from the excellent Andy Manley’ **** (List). 'A true celebration of the nature of children’s play. Inventive and a little bit cheeky' (Noel Jordan, Imaginate). www.madeinscotlandshowcase.com

Most Popular See More

Back to the Future - The Musical

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Phantom of the Opera

From £27.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Mamma Mia!

From £18.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Frozen the Musical

From £30.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Mousetrap

From £15.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Moulin Rouge! The Musical

From £30.00

More Info

Find Tickets