On your marks, get set, GO! As part of it ongoing Family Series, Marin Theatre Company brings the spirit of sportsmanship, friendship, and living in the moment to its magical production of Brendan Murray’s Hare & Tortoise. The third production in MTC's Family Series, Hare & Tortoise features slow and steady Tortoise versus speedy and impatient Hare, who race to understand that determination and will for success truly matter in life.
Marin Theatre Company's Family Series continues this fall with their original production of The Jungle Book, opening next Saturday, October 29 for 10 performances only! Adapted by Greg Banks from the beloved stories by Rudyard Kipling and directed by Logan Ellis, this production is special in that MTC will be featuring the protagonist Mowgli as a girl! Here's what MTC Artistic Director Jasson Minadakis says about this artistic choice:
"We, led by director Logan Ellis and our cast and crew, feel it is imperative to give our girls the opportunity to see themselves portrayed onstage in a classic adventure story normally reserved for boys. We doubly believe it is important for young boys to see girls in powerful hero roles this year as our national conversation is rife with bullying, sexism and gender discussion."
This weekend, Ross Valley Players presents its production of the family favorite Robin Hood by Ivey Award-winner Greg Banks. This classic tale of good versus evil follows the legend of Robin Hood and his merry band, who rob from the rich and dishonest to give to the poor. This story of resiliency, compassion and heroism is told with an easygoing and humorous twist that both children and adults will love. Robin Hood begins with a preview this Thursday, July 14 and runs through Sunday, August 14. Opening night is Friday, July 15 at 8 pm.
Robin Hood and his merry band of underground heroes rally to support those who cannot fight for themselves. But when they run afoul of the greedy Prince John, the deceptive Sheriff of Nottingham devises an elaborate plot to discover Robin’s hideout and capture him once and for all. Full of swordfights and wordplay, this modern take on the classic story is a high-powered, action-packed, fun adventure. Robin Hood is directed by Cris Cassell, and features cast members Nicholas Schwager (Robin Hood), Cory Anderson (Little John, Soldier), Pablo Hamlin (Prince John, Will, Friar Tuck), Izaak Heath (Sheriff of Nottingham), and Ariana Mahallati (Maid Marian, Much).
It's always amazing to see how the Mountain Play transforms Mt. Tam's Cushing Memorial Amphitheater. Last year it was Neverland and Captain Hook's pirate ship, and this season it's the inner-city New York neighborhood setting of West Side Story. We got a chance to see the Mountain Play's production of this Broadway classic on its opening day, and as usual, it was a fantastic outdoor theater experience! My 10-year-old daughter and I really felt like we were transported to a different place and era.
With plenty of classic songs like "Maria", "America", and "I Feel Pretty" and spectacular dancing choreographed by Nicole Helfer and based on the Jerome Robbins' original work, West Side Story is exhilarating and full of energy. It's based on Romeo and Juliet, so don't expect a happy ending, though. West Side Story is directed by Jay Manley (who also directed The Sound of Music on Mt. Tam in 2013), and Leonard Bernstein's score is performed by David Möschler leading a live 18-piece orchestra.
When we learned last year that the 2015 Mountain Play production was Peter Pan, we were really excited. We attended the opening performance of Peter Pan on Sunday and we were definitely not disappointed! Sir J.M. Barrie's timeless tale of the Darling Children, the boy who wouldn't grow up, Captain Hook, and the Lost Boys was presented in its 1954 Broadway musical form, with classic songs like "I Gotta Crow", "I'm Flying", and "I Won't Grow Up", among others. This year's production was directed by Michael Schwartz, with musical direction by Debra Chambliss, and choreography by Nicole Helfer.
The Mountain Play's Peter Pan is fast-paced with plenty of singing, dancing, and audience participation. Before the show, groups of pirates and Lost Boys roamed the audience to pose for photos and get the crowd excited for the performance to come.
One of Marin County's most beloved and unique events is the famous Mountain Play—an outdoor theater experience high on the slopes of Mt. Tamalpais that's been going strong for over a century! This year's 102nd Mountain Play production is the timeless Broadway musical Peter Pan, based on J.M. Barrie's classic tale of the boy who wouldn't grow up, the villanous Captain Hook, and the Darling children, and Neverland.
Featuring classic songs like, "I Won't Grow Up", "I Gotta Crow", and "I'm Flying", the Mountain Play's production of Peter Pan is directed by Michael Schwartz and features Melissa Wolfklain as Peter Pan, Jeff Wiesen as Captain Hook/Mr. Darline, Susan Zelinsky as Mrs. Darling, and Davide Yen as Smee. Musical direction is, as usual, Debra Chambliss.
Performances take place at 2 pm at Mt. Tam's Cushing Memorial Amphitheater on May 24 and 31, and June 7, 13, 14, and 21. General seating ticket prices range from $25–$40, and children 3 and under are free. Reserved seats start at $60. Order tickets online here or by phone at (415) 383-1100.
“I love that this summer camp is more than just fun & games. I wanted a camp where my kids would have fun AND learn something. At Marin Shakespeare summer camp, they learned about Shakespeare & developed an interest in classic literature. It was great for them to have gentle encouragement to get on stage & perform for a small audience. Each teacher we had was different, but each one had an extremely creative way to engage the kids. Highly recommended.”
—Nicki, Parent of two Marin Shakespeare campers
Marin Shakespeare Company has been providing fun and educational Shakespeare summer camps for years in Marin County, California. They offer camps for students ages 5–19, in locations across San Rafael and Ross. Their camps feature professional teaching artists, fun and educational Shakespeare instruction, and performance opportunities for the campers. Many of their campers come back year after year, and some even end up on stage with the professional Shakespeare company when they get older!
Everyone in my family is looking forward to this year's Mountain Play: Peter Pan! Performances of this production of J.M. Barrie's timeless tale of the boy who wouldn't grow up, pirates, the Lost Boys, and the Darling children take place at 2 pm in Mt. Tam's Cushing Memorial Amphitheater on May 24 and 31, and June 7, 13, 14, and 21. The cast includes Melissa WolfKlain at Peter Pan, Jeff Wiesen as Captain Hook/Mr. Darling, Erin Ashe as Wendy Darling, and David Yen as Mr. Smee. Come be a part of this century-old Marin County tradition!
Peter Pan first soared over Broadway in 1954 and features iconic songs like "I'm Flying," "I've Gotta Crow," "I Won't Grow Up," and "Never Never Land," and a book rich with imagination, warmth, and rollicking adventure. Peter Pan has continued to thrill children young and old through various stage and film adaptations, as well as numerous television broadcasts including a live NBC telecast that aired in December.
The Mountain Play makes musical magic once again with its 101st production: Rodgers and Hammerstein's South Pacific. Set in a tropical island paradise during World War II and featuring classic songs like "Some Enchanted Evening", "Happy Talk", "Bali Ha'i", and "I'm Gonna Wash That Man Right Outa My Hair", this year's production is directed by Bay Area theater pro Linda Dunn. Dunn also happens to be the ex-wife of veteran Mountain Play director Jim Dunn, who performs in South Pacific as US Navy Captain George Brackett.
South Pacific tells two parallel love stories, one of Ensign Nellie Forbush (Taylor Chalker), a spunky Navy nurse, and local French plantation owner Emile de Becque (Peter Vilkin); the other of Lieutenant Joseph Cable (Tyler Costin) and young island woman Liat (Mia Klenk). The cast also features Randy Nazarian in as Luther Billis and Lily Tung Crystal as Bloody Mary.
As always, it's fantastic live musical entertainment for the whole family, and a don't-miss Marin experience. My kids look forward to going to the Mountain Play every year. Great tickets are still available for Mountain Play performances on May 25 and June 1, 7, 8, and 15. All shows begin at 2 pm.