Must see: A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings, Battersea Arts Centre, London SW11

Fine balancing acts in a minor miracle of magic realism

Gabriel García Márquez's magical realist fable proves to be the perfect vehicle for this bewitching collaboration between Islington's Little Angel Theatre and Cornwall's Kneehigh company.

The rod-operated puppetry gives the right fantastical twist to this story of how locals react when the eponymous creature crash-lands in their coastal village.

The arrival of the old man – a hauntingly emaciated figure – seems to rid the place of its plague of crabs and cure a dying boy. But who is he, demon or redeemer?

The boy's mother is soon charging visitors for a touch of his supposedly healing feathers, yet the piece counterbalances its satire on the cynical ways in which people deal with otherness by the joie de vivre of its comic quirks.

 The precise nature of the man's powers remains a mystery but this enchanting show can claim to be a minor theatrical miracle.

(020 7223 2223; bac.org.uk) to 19 Jan

Comments