'Bluey’s Big Play' Is Now Touring the US—And It's Fun for All Ages

The director of the live show chats with us about the show’s emotional message

The first episode of Bluey that I actually sat down to watch with my daughter, rather than semi-listening to from another room, was an episode titled "Dance Mode."

A quick synopsis of that episode is a family of anthropomorphic dogs realize they are speaking over, and for, the youngest child. After having a heartwarming chat about how they could do better in the future, they embarrass themselves dancing in front of a street performer to make it up to their little one. I realized that this wasn’t just another brightly colored kids show. At seven minutes, each episode is filled with playfulness, warmth, and, most importantly, an emotional lesson. It could be as simple as "following the rules of games is what makes them fun" or more complex like "run your own race at your own pace and you’ll do great" (Yes I do cry every time the episode "Baby Race" is on). So, of course, I was thrilled to see that Bluey’s Big Play was making its journey to the U.S. I was able to see it in NYC the week of Thanksgiving, which is where Bluey is making her Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade debut.

The director of Bluey’s Big Play, Rosemary Myers, who is also the Artistic Director of Windmill Theatre Company, an award-winning national performing arts company based in Adelaide, South Australia, chatted with me before the show, surrounded by fans who were waiting for Bluey and her sister, Bingo, to make an appearance.

Myers, who's work specializes in children's theater and puppetry, was invited to work on the play and “jumped at the opportunity because Bluey is such a brilliant world. It was such a privilege to be invited into it.” The show is in its third year under her direction and just finished its tour in Australia.

<p>NEW YORK, NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 18: Director Rose Myers attends "Bluey's Big Play The Stage Show" press preview at The <a href="https://www.hulu.com/" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Hulu" class="link ">Hulu</a> Theater at Madison Square Garden on <a href="https://parade.com/living/november-holidays-observances" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:November" class="link ">November</a> 18, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images)</p>

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 18: Director Rose Myers attends "Bluey's Big Play The Stage Show" press preview at The Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden on November 18, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images)

“It’s been an amazing ride. Just to be pulled into this whole journey with a show that has this kind of residence with lots of people has been incredible," she said. You can tell the show has been thought out for a young audience by someone with experience, with the opening featuring a slow scene that helps kids establish the world on the stage at their own pace (and leaves room for that dreaded bathroom trip right as the show’s starting), to the pacing between high energy and quieter scenes, which kept much of the audience entertained for the full hour.

The live show has many of the similar elements of the TV show and is full of callbacks to beloved episodes like "Keepy Uppy" (maybe have your keepy uppy skills ready if you go), yet it still stands on its own as a unique story. A big part of that is due to the show being written by Bluey creator Joe Brumm. “There’s some balance of all the things you love from the show like the games and the playfulness but it has its own special story about sister relationships which is played out through both the girls and their mom, Chili. That’s something that Joe does quite a lot. He plays out the theme with both the adults and the kids.” Myers explained.

I found there to be a lot more slapstick comedy (which my daughter squealed with joy over) than dry humor that older TV viewers might expect. Still, the end (before the curtain call dance party) left me just as emotional as "Sleepytime" or "Camping." So, yes, I did cry while sitting next to a stranger and an empty seat since my daughter chose to sit on her father's lap instead of in her ticketed seat.

Ticket prices vary from state to state. I would say snagging a seat as close to the front as you can is obviously the best, but the puppets and puppeteers are actually quite emotive, so even those further back will get a good experience. There’s an option for VIP which includes meeting Bluey and Bingo. We were able to do this and while my chatty little girl was stunned into silence upon meeting the sisters, she was able to give Bingo, her favorite, a big hug. It’s been a few days and she’s still asking me when we can go back to hang out with Bluey and Bingo.

You might even see some adults there by themselves as Bluey has a growing audience of older viewers. I don’t think you need a child to enjoy the show, both the live version or cartoon. While it’s certainly geared towards younger kids, a show that takes viewers into a warm loving home is an escape many of us crave and deserve. Bandit once said “It’s just monkeys singing songs mate” to Bluey as she was reading too much into a movie they were watching. And the show writers know that the world is filled with little Bluey's who aren’t just watching a show, but growing and learning about the world around them, no matter their age.

More Entertainment: