A unique version of the classic story Jack and the Beanstalk will amuse its audience this month for the first time in five years.
Tiffany Bridges, who plays the giant’s wife for the Storyland Theatre production, adores this version. The late Rick Bracken, a founding member of Storyland, wrote it, and Bridges believes it is not only entertaining, but helps build character.
“In the traditional story, the giant is mean, but in Bracken’s version the giant is very nice and silly,” she said. “From the special effects to the stage prompts, this musical provides them with a good experience in a theater in a short amount of time.”
Sixty percent of the children who attend these plays, which are staged at Imperial Theatre, are disadvantaged students. That makes Barbara Feldman, the musical’s director, proud.
“Our goal is to expose children to theater and give them an opportunity that they’ve never had or never will have,” she said. “What we want the children to learn from this play is just because they are different doesn’t mean they’re not special.”
Bridges, who has 20 years’ acting experience, still finds great joy in putting a smile on children’s faces.
“The feedback from the audience is extraordinary,” she said. “Bringing a fairy tale to life is a challenge, so it feels really good to see the kids not only enjoying, but understanding, what you are doing.”
From March 27-30, about 7,900 children are expected to attend the shows, so an RSVP is required. Tickets are $4.50 for weekdays and $5 for the family matinee. No RSVP is required for the matinee at 3 p.m. March 31.
Storyland Theatre is once again partnering with The Art Factory. That means The Art Factory can visit a school and create a specially designed, hands-on art project based on the performance that school’s students attended. Small groups also can visit The Art Factory.
“This is our original version of the classical Jack and
the Beanstalk with a little
twist,” Feldman said. “Addi-tional characters were added and there is a wonderful lesson to be learned from the play.”