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Archive | Children’s Theatre

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Review: ‘Duke Ellington’s Neighborhood’ from The In Series performing at Gala Hispanic Theatre

Engaging, sophisticated entertainment and education that didn’t talk down to the intended audience; children who may not have been familiar with the grand musical and cultural figure, DC’s very own Duke Ellington: that was my takeaway from the In Series very short run of Duke Ellington’s Neighborhood. Marketed as a production for the younger set (and […]

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Review: ‘Madagascar—A Musical Adventure’ at Red Branch Theatre Company

Chalk up one more cartoon feature making a dash for freedom under the footlights. Madagascar—A Musical Adventure is now filling the intimate Red Branch Theatre with a veritable Noah’s Ark of singing, dancing animal friends. Young viewers especially will find themselves the happy captives of this class menagerie. Based on the 2005 DreamWorks Animation feature […]

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Review: ‘Snow Day’ at Arts on the Horizon

Arts on the Horizon makes the most of a sparse, simple stage for their entertaining production of Rex Daugherty’s “Snow Day.” The performance starts with nothing more than a sheet spread across a clothesline; at either end are ladders, each rung wrapped in garland. At the center of the stage is Skip (Amanda Forstrom), asleep […]

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Jo Vito Ramirez. Photo by Mark Garvin.

Review: ‘Peter Pan’ at the Arden Theatre

Arden Children’s Theatre opens its 20th Anniversary Season with a delightful production of Peter Pan, adapted for the stage by Douglas Irvine, and based on J.M. Barrie’s books. Whit MacLaughlin directs an agile cast in this new and funny take on a classic favorite. In the Arden’s Peter Pan the children do fly, but this […]

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Review: ‘Charlotte’s Web’ at Imagination Stage

If you’re on the lookout for an engaging, kid-friendly activity this holiday season, look no further than the classic tale of Charlotte’s Web at Imagination Stage. Based on the renowned children’s novel by E.B. White, it has been adapted for the stage by Joseph Robinette and directed by Kathryn Chase Bryer. Chase Bryer takes all […]

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Review: ‘Drumming with Dishes’ at Arts on the Horizon

My three-year old son and I sat with about forty restless children and their haggard parents in a crowded playroom while we waited for Drumming with Dishes to begin. I was especially nervous, because my son is still too young to sit through any extended show of any type. And I knew my worry wasn’t […]

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Michael Gamache. Photo by Shawn May.

Review: ‘Aesop’s Fables’ at Quintessence Theatre Group

All of the characters in Lee Cortopassi’s colorful cartoon-like adaptation of Aesop’s Fables sparkle, and speak, just like the original ones drawn up way back circa 600 B.C. But they also snap, crackle and pop with super-duper sound effects, designed by Daniel Ison, cool lighting concocted by Joseph Glodek, and an exceptionally savvy ensemble. Aesop’s […]

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Review: ‘Gruff!’ at the McGinn/Cazale Theatre

Part of the first Summer Family Theater Festival at the McGinn/Cazale Theatre, Gruff!, a co-presentation by Vital Theatre Company and Doppelskope, is everything that great children’s theater should be. The ecologically-conscious musical fairytale, with concept and text by Ora Fruchter and Christopher Scheer and music by Toby Singer, is entertaining, engaging, and educational, in its […]

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A performance of The Beast in the Bayou. Photo courtesy of Enchantment Theatre Company.

Interview: Landis and Jennifer Smith Discuss ‘The Beast in the Bayou’ to play at Wolf Trap July 6-7th and Penn’s Landing July 11th

The great thing about fairy tales is their malleability. Fairy tales have been around for millennia and are often transported from country to country, morphing with each region and time that they inhabit. Enchantment Theatre Company carries on the proud tradition of adopting fairy tales with it’s latest piece of children’s theater, The Beast in […]

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Review: ‘The Little Mermaid JR’ at BRAVO Productions

Theater is a vital part of our culture. Imagination is discovered. History revealed. New ideas expressed. And the limitless lessons to be garnered from our fundamentally flawed human selves are explored. What better way to ensure that theater continues to grow and thrive than by teaching our children the benefits of the art, as a […]

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Review: ‘Godspell JR’ at Bravo Productions

BRAVO Productions Theatre for Young Artists strives to nurture young, local talent and offers the opportunity for those budding entertainers to perform both mainstream and classic shows on the stage. The group most recently completed their production of Stephen Schwartz’s musical, Godspell, with book by John Michael-Tabelak. The show, which follows the life of Jesus, […]

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Tempest Encore Stage

Review: ‘The Tempest’ at Encore Stage & Studio

Encore Stage & Studio closed their most recent production, Shakespeare’s comedy The Tempest, this past weekend. As the self-proclaimed “Theatre for kids, by kids,” Encore works with young local talent to fulfill their mission “to build life-long appreciation for live theater by involving young people in all aspects of theater arts — onstage, backstage, in […]

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Review: ‘Hairspray JR.’ at the Bowie Community Theatre Youth Theatre Program by Sharon Preator

Tracy Turnblad reminds us that “You gotta think big to be big” as Bowie Community Theatre (“BCT”) delivered a big success with Hairspray JR. for their Youth Theatre Program’s first production. This shorter, more child-friendly version of the John Waters film, with book by Mark O’Donnell and Thomas Meehan, music by Marc Shaiman, and lyrics […]

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Review: ‘The Jungle Book’ at Imagination Stage

Imagination Stage presents The Jungle Book, based on the classic story by Rudyard Kipling and adapted for the stage by Greg Banks. Janet Stanford directs a small cast of five in this production who, by way of talent, ingenuity, and several flash costume changes, bring an entire jungle to life onstage. Scenic Designer Daniel Ettinger […]

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Review: ‘Hairspray, Jr.’ at Ovations Theatre

Ovations Theatre hits another one out of the park with their production of Hairspray, Jr. performed entirely by 3rd through 9th graders. With a book by Marc O’Donnell and Thomas Meehan, music my Marc Shaiman and lyrics by Scott Whitman and Marc Shaiman, Hairspray tells the story of Tracy Turnblad’s desire to dance on The […]

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