Bank On It, a magical children’s show all about the Bank and much more at Beyond Barbican

Photo: Patrick Baldwin

Photo: Patrick Baldwin

Bank On It, a magical children’s show all about the Bank and much more at Beyond Barbican

Theatre Rites ‘ Bank On It ‘ is an imaginative exploration of how the banking system works and to teach kids about sustainability. It is not about how to make withdrawals and deposits but actually presenting issues and vocabulary that we are seeing in the papers these days. Words like the Financial Crisis and Fiscal Cliff are all wrapped up in a short musical comedy for kids as part of the Beyond Barbican programme.

The promenade starts at the Rose Lipman Building with actors or our bank patrons queuing up to get some money out of the cash machine only the machine is broken! This is just not happening! All of a sudden we see a man inside the cash machine.  It’s the bank manager! We all then chase him downstairs to the basement of the bank to find it completely transformed.  Hilarity ensues as the Bank patrons chase the Bank Manager trying to get hold of their money and figure out why he’s hiding it.

It is brilliantly done with an excellent cast.  They managed to make the mundane exciting and amusing.  As we sit in the Bank Manager’s offices, the actors go through the headlines of today’s economic news and yes it’s a pretty grim picture but the ensemble make it intriguing.  They also talk about the importance of thinking about what you spend your hard-earned cash on and it’s precisely when we all go into the safe with them that all the pieces of the puzzle come together.  The Bank Manager finally lets us into his secret world where the actors take us around different cubicles where we are encouraged to draw trees to remember how important they are to us and are given a quick lesson on fossil fuels and how we can save energy by turning off our lights.

There is a great cast of actors, puppeteers and even an accountant who calculates his figures as if his life depended on it.  There is also a magical ending to the show which I found completely touching.  It was an interactive wishing well where we could all throw our pennies and make a wish of our own.  Both the adults and the children were beaming and it was truly an enchanting way to bring our adventure to an end.

On till Sunday July 14. Co-commissioned by the Barbican, Theatre Rites and Create London in association with Warwick Arts Centre and the Economics Department of the University of Warwick.

Box Office 08451207511


Bank on It

About Melissa Palleschi

Melissa Palleschi New York actress living in London and trained in Italy, New York and here in London at the Actors Studio. She is also a founding member of the Planktonic Players, who made their London debut at Camden Fringe Festival in 2012.


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