Australian children’s entertainers The Wiggles are used to playing
sold-out arenas filled with thousands of children, but on August
15 they performed to a much smaller audience at our annual toy
testing event at SickKids Hospital.
In truth, they’re just as at home in this intimate setting, says
Simon. “Even when you’re performing to a huge crowd, each child
feels like you’re singing only to them.”
If you’re saying to yourself, “Who’s Simon?” don’t worry, you
haven’t lost it. Simon, Emma and Lachy are the new Wiggles on
the block, joining veteran founding Wiggle Anthony. Emma, 23, is
the youngest (coincidentally the same age as the band itself), and
actually appeared in a Wiggles concert DVD when she was a little
girl. “So it’s a little weird, I’ve come full circle.”
But one doesn’t become a Wiggle overnight. The trio have been
“Wiggles-in-training” for the past year, apprenticing under Greg,
Jeff and Murray, who are still very much a part of the business.
The group wanted to give children time to accept the new
members so they’ve been performing in smaller venues, especially
hospitals. When asked to join our toy testing event, they jumped
at the chance.
“This has been the highlight of our day,” says Anthony, who led
the group on his guitar as they performed for the young patients,
who could barely believe their eyes. Later, they posed for pictures
and sang more for individual families. The emotion was evident
on parents’ faces, too. “I think they’re just very appreciative of the
joy their children are receiving,” says Simon. And we appreciated
the Wiggles for making our event even more special!
Catch The Wiggles when they return to Toronto during their
35-city North American tour for three shows on September 27
and 28 at Ricoh Coliseum.
Originally published in ParentsCanada magazine, October 2013.