Africa – Weird and Wonderful Facts, Rhythm and Stories.

Children’s Shows (storytelling, children’s)

‘It will change the way you think about Africa.’

Laughing Horse @ The Free Sisters (Venue 272) 11:30. Free.

We are cosy squashed in to a near gale blustered pagoda tent in The Three Sister courtyard, Cowgate.

To the roar of traffic two metres away our host, Njambi ‘Jambi’ McGrath takes us on a whistle-stop journey across Africa in song, chants, lo-fi visual aids and a good deal of steely nerve to brave all the distractions and ‘Go on then, entertain us,’ looks on the kids’ faces.

Welcome to the parallel word of free-fringe showbiz. You are thrown in deep and you swim or sink. We learn how to say hello friend in Swahili – approximately ‘Jambo Rafiki’.

Swahili is a compound language adapted from Arabic settlers long ago. We are introduced to exotic fauna and flora that seem to have a unifying bond based on their pooey properties. There is a story about a pangolin who befriends a baby mongoose.

We learn that there is a tribe who have kept the village fire burning apparently from the beginning of time. Best of all, we say hello to the Pixie frog. It can hibernate for up to seven years and the males are able to change gender – ‘Just like Margaret Thatcher!’

What the heck are they teaching in Africa? It is fun, only thirty minutes or so depending on storms or sunshine – and free, donations grateful accepted. Go on, take a punt!