JUST the thought of bringing your child to watch their first stage production can fill you with dread.

Will it end up being a waste of time because they lose concentration or, worst still, will they just scream and shout throughout the show?Thankfully those fears were put to rest when we took our three-year-old to watch Wow! Said The Owl at Home theatre in Manchester.

He was mesmerised throughout the 35-minute production, as were all the other kids. It helped that he was familiar with Tim Hopgood’s award-winning book, of course.

But it was fascinating to see how engaged he was and, from talking to him afterwards, it was clear that he understood the themes about colours. That is because Little Angel Theatre’s adaptation understands and respects its audience.

This is a simple, gentle and excellently devised show for two to five year olds. The original picture book is about a little owl who stays awake when the sun comes up to experience the colours of the daytime world. Many families are familiar with the story as it is part of the Bookstart scheme.

Director Joy Haynes expands upon the book’s themes with a simple and yet dynamic stage set up where props come from all kinds of places that you would not expect. Vines, flowers and butterflies emerge alongside the sun and sky in various different ways which sparked our imagination.

Puppeteer Nix Wood was a delight, bringing the little owl to life using a rod puppet with movable wings and a head that could turn.

There is also a mini version of the owl and hand puppets but what was more impressive was the old fashioned shadow puppetry.

Nix Wood was the only person on stage, alongside the feathered star of the show, and her performance was enthusiastic, warm and engaging. Even her dress was part of the ‘set’.

If Home’s mission is to nurture next generation of theatre goers it is well on the way to succeeding. Recommended.

Wow! Said The Owl is on at Home until Friday, December 30. Visit homemcr.org/production/wow-said-the-owl