Theyre back!: The crazy crew of Animal Tails are back with Animal Tails II. Pictured left to right (from back) are: Musa Ntuli, Shika Budhoo, Shona Johnson and Savanna Bigara. Picture: Supplied

WHILE Justin Bieber has given Durban a miss on his world tour, the local and very popular Justin Beaver is set to hit the stage at the Catalina Theatre.

After an amazing per- formance last year, you can see him and other popular Animal Tails friends in Animal Tails II.

The show is great family fun over the festive period with an array of stories packed with laughter, sing-a-longs and dance-a-longs, too.

This year’s action-packed adventure features some of the characters from last year’s show. Winnie the Warthog is back and on a mission to realise her dream of being a fashionista. But this time she has to contend with the evil twin bunnies, Foo and Foo and their henchman Fluffy McFluff, who have set out to ruin Winnie’s plan. Rolex the Watchdog is also back and in store for him is for a valuable lesson in kindness.

Tonight caught up with writer and director Sandy Bigara who told us more about Animal Tails II: “Last year we worked with four to five stories that were written by my gran. It was her children’s stories that we adapted for the stage. This year the stories are all mine. It’s a mad mix. There are a lot of ‘soapie’ moments and we have a set of evil bunny twins who are insane,” she laughed.

Bigara says they’ve used a lot of character references from popular Nickelodeon and Disney characters and the humour is such that it can be appreciated by the whole family.

“For example, we have this one sketch called The Big Heist. There are three dogs from The Bluff in the front garden who are always out to steal ‘the stash’, There is a Quiz Show sketch, a fashion show… it’s all different stories the whole way through. The different themes touch on issues such as animal safety, helping others and more,” she explained.

Bigara, who is also a teacher, prides herself on creating children’s enter- tainment with educational content.

“Because I’m a teacher I’ve included aspects like numeracy, colours and body movement. In terms of age range we are aiming at ages two to 13 year olds. The humour is Will Ferell/Jack Black style so parents and older kids are kept well entertained and for the smaller children we have loads of sing-a-longs and dance-a-longs,” she smiled.

There will be a cameo appearance by Justin Beaver, as well as the debut per- formance of the talented Savanna Rae Grace (four-and-a-half-years old) as the show’s opening act.

• Animal Tails II runs until Saturday at 11am daily at the Catalina Theatre. The show stars Bigara, Shona Johnson, Musa Ntuli, Shika Budhoo and Savanna Bigara. Tickets: R60, pensioner discount applies, call 031 305 6889