Two alternative nativities

Two little boys in their nativity costumes.

One of the many benefits of working for myself is that I don’t have any problem getting time off work to attend school performances. Getting round to writing about them afterwards can be tricky as the tardy nature of this post proves, but being there when it mattered posed no such challenge. So anyway, both Dylan and Xander took part in nativities recently while Kate, Amelie and I watched on proudly. Well, Kate and I did. Amelie slept through both. Rude baby.

Dylan’s nativity came first; it provided an alternative angle on the traditional story as it was a musical one from the point of view of a flock of birds combining their trip to see the baby Jesus with moving to warmer climes. Dylan stood out as he insisted on being a robin. We didn’t realise he was part of a chorus rather than a specific part when we made the costume – that’ll teach us to take his word for things!

Kate made the main part of his outfit out of last year’s shepherd’s tabard – resourceful, eh? – and an old red T-shirt while I made the hat which needed to include a beak. The body part of the costume was brilliant. The hat wasn’t. It looked more like something you’d expect to see in an am-dram version of Dr Zhivago. Oh well – he wasn’t bothered. As soon as he clocked us in the audience, he started pretending to be a bird, puffing out his chest and pecking the scenery. Maybe I wasn’t actually that far off with the aforementioned Russian link and he was, in fact, employing the Stanislavski method?

A written quote by a child. It reads: "I want to dress as a banana skin and dance to Frozen".

Then came Xander’s turn. His pre school produced an alternative nativity of their own, complete with plot ideas taken from things the children had said about Christmas. Apparently, he wanted to play the part of a banana skin – don’t ask; I have no idea either – and had to make do with his second choice. He wanted to be an angel. Given his reputation of being a bit of a hell raiser, I was somewhat surprised but, then again, Lucifer was an angel.

So it was, that he took to the stage in a white dress, gold wings and silver halo. He was the only angel – the others had been replaced by multiple Annas and Elsas. He sat there looking the part to start with but soon decided to participate in a one-boy gurning competition, ignoring everything else that was going on in favour of impersonating a gargoyle.

He then decided to treat the audience to a fashion show – using the aisle in the middle of the seating as a catwalk. He strutted his stuff twice, making sure everyone saw his flashing Spider-man trainers underneath his dress. On this evidence, we could have the next Daniel Day-Lewis and Danny La Rue on our hands…

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