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Review: Walking with Dinosaurs at the O2 Arena

Article By: Sue Learner, News Editor

Our three-year-old sat on the edge of his seat transfixed as the lights went down in the 02 Arena and the show Walking with Dinosaurs began.

T-Rex and her baby - Credit David Schienmann

“Are the dinosaurs our friends?” he asked me as we heard a faint roaring sound. It grew louder and louder and he added: “The dinosaurs are not our friends.”

The show, which on its last worldwide tour drew an audience of 7.5m, generating £240m in ticket sales, is now on in London and is about to move to parts of Europe and then back to the UK.

The show tells the story of when dinosaurs walked the earth tracing their development through the Cretaceous, Triassic and Jurassic periods of Earth's history.

It begins with a narrator called Huxley who tells the audience about the different time periods and their effects on our planet and gives you some idea of the size of these huge animals.

The animatronics show features life-sized dinosaur models including a 40ft terrifying T-Rex.

The work that has gone into making the dinosaurs is incredible and our three-year-old was convinced the dinosaurs were real.

Our other sons aged six and eight weren’t so easily deceived but they were still gripped by the show which is accompanied by ever changing backdrops and loud music making the dinosaurs movements even more dramatic.

Brachiosaurus - Credit David Schienmann

Finn, aged eight said: “The dinosaurs were really big and realistic. My favourite dinosaur was T-Rex because it scared my mum and my brothers.”

While Dylan aged six, said: “My favourite dinosaur was the baby T-Rex.”

The technology that can make these dinosaurs seem so real is amazing. With the smaller dinosaurs, you could see the puppeteer’s legs but the larger dinosaurs are on oblong bases and are controlled by ‘voodoo puppeteers’ backstage.

These ‘voodoo puppeteers’ operate smaller copies of the dinosaurs backstage and then the movements are sent by remote control to the ones on the actual stage. One of the puppeteers is in charge of the sounds each dinosaur makes and its eye movements and facial expressions.

The whole show lasts for two hours with an interval, but it all seemed to go so quickly with the finale a terrifying Tyrannosaurus Rex roaring at the audience, while my three-year-old sat on my lap clutching my hand.

Walking with Dinosaurs will definitely be an experience that they will always remember and it is a must for dinosaur fans both young and old!

Walking with Dinosaurs is on at the O2 till 6 Jan.

It is then moving to Germany and will be back in the UK on 28 March. For more information on the tour go to


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