Mary Jansen performs a card trick with Colton Buga – Lucie Roy Photos
Photos by Lucie Roy
Morinville – Children’s entertainers Peter and Mary performed at the Morinville Community Library Aug. 6, entertaining their young audience with an hour-long show set to the Summer Reading Program’s Eureka theme. Pulling from a repertoire of approximately 3,500 original and cover songs the couple have accumulated since beginning their careers in the UK in 1970s, Peter and Mary offered their young audience music, magic, puppetry and plenty of audience participation.
Summer Reading Program Coordinator Kaitlin Erdmann said she was pleased with the response to the show. “The kids really enjoyed it,” she said. “They had magic and included the kids a lot more than some entertainers would. I thought everyone enjoyed it.”
What sets the Peter and Mary show apart from others is the couple’s ability to make a show tailored to the audience in front of them. Just what that show will look like is realized as it unfolds.
“Years and years ago we always had a set show,” said Peter Jansen, the Peter half of Peter and Mary. “Then we learnt to have a big repertoire and a big pot of things from which we could draw. We look at who’s in front of us, and that is when the show is built.” Partner Mary agrees with the formula and said after so many years in the entertainment business they know how to gauge and audience. “We like to mix it up so it is not just one thing,” she said. We seem to manage to do that by mixing music, the ventriloquist puppets and the magic. Today being a Eureka theme, everything was Eureka. We had a lot of fun.”
Peter and Mary have had a busy summer thus far. In addition to Wednesday’s Morinville show, they performed 30 shows with Thomas the Tank Engine in Calgary, have done two shows for the Valley Zoo and two for the Muttart Conservatory in Edmonton, performed Fort Edmonton Park’s grand opening, and just returned from the Junior Forest Wardens of Canada’s National Camp in Meadow Lake Provincial Park, Saskatchewan.
Peter and Mary Jansen had a musical band performing Aug. 6. Allie Ferrier, Madison and Caleb Maas, and Marcella Baril participated.
Mary Jansen with one of the couple’s many puppets.
Mary and Kermit the Frog’s cousin, Hermit the Frog.