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* Barbara Ellestad, Publisher * ALL Content Copyright 2011-2014*
No matter your age, all of us ‘grew up’ with the Cat in the Hat, the Grinch, and green eggs and ham. We all learned that a whole lesson about the good things in life can be taught through a rhyme, thanks to Dr. Seuss.
You can relive those childhood memories and enjoy the outstanding talent of dozens of local kids with the Mesquite Kids on Stage production of SeussicalJr, now playing at the Mesquite Community Theatre.
I attended Friday night’s performance, not really knowing what to expect. But, with Susan Bennett at the helm as Producer/Director and Jenny Bennett serving as Musical Director, I knew I was in for a special treat. I wasn’t disappointed.
From the opening act to the very end, the kids were awesome. They sang and danced their way through the almost two hour show that featured the antics of Horton the Elephant, JoJoWho/Boy, the Cat in the Hat, Mayzie and Gertrude. Mr. and Mrs. Mayor of Whoville were outstanding, as was the Sour Kangaroo, Judge Yertle, Grinch, and VladVladikoff.
All the actors were so fun to watch from the Bird Girls, the Wickersham Brothers, the Monkeys, on into the Citizens of Whoville, the Jungle Animals, and the Hunters.
So many kids wanted to participate in the fun and frivolity of the production that Bennett divided them into two casts, the White and the Red. The White Cast performed Thursday night with a repeat tonight at 6:30 pm. The Red Cast made their first appearance on Friday night and will do it all again today at 2:00 pm.
The play combines parts and plots from many different Dr. Seuss’ famous books written not just for children but for adults also. It’s artfully crafted with songs throughout the production and the kids sang them with gusto and glee. If there were any hiccups in the evening’s performance they were hard to find. But who cared anyway?
These kids have been hard at work rehearsing four days a week for eight weeks. But it wasn’t just the actors and actresses that put so many hours into the production’s success. All of the parents, siblings, and friends who helped create the beautiful stage scenery and the costumes, and who worked diligently during the production itself,contributed to making the evening so enjoyable. All of the heart and soul everyone put into the production showed.
Even if you don’t have children in the play, you really should take some time to attend one of the last two productions today. I guarantee you’ll come away with a smile on your face and faith in the future.
It was kind of sad that the copyright owners of the Seussical Jr. production won’t allow videotapes to be made of the production. However, Cindi Delaney of Delaney Studio created a beautiful slide show of the two different casts and has it available for sale. The two slideshows below are from Delaney’s work.The top slideshow is the Red Cast. The bottom slideshow is the White Cast.
Click here for a complete list of all the cast members, both White and Red, and the Technical Staff who worked so hard behind the scenes.