It takes a special kind of imagination to recreate the magic of childishness. It is the province of the brilliantly insightful.
Dennis Lee is a poet who captures the child’s world. His book of verses for the young and mischievous, Alligator Pie, has been adapted by five of Soulpepper’s artists into a frothy mix of antic play and playful theatrics.
Ins Choi, Raquel Duffy, Mike Ross, Gregory Prest and Ken Mackenzie are the collaborators and stars of Alligator Pie, in repertory at Pershing Square Signature Center through July 29th. The production is delicious. Its appeal to children is undeniable, as witnessed by their rapt attention; it is likewise a treat for the grown-ups accompanying them to see this sparkling tom-foolery.
For more information, a schedule of all the performances during their residence in New York, and tickets, please visit Soulpepper On 42nd Street.
Now playing at Canal Park Playhouse, in a joint production with a new company called The TRUF, are two short productions meant to connect adult to child.
The adult-friendly children’s story, “Sarazad and the Monster-King,” playing through July 14th, pits Sarazad (Penny Middleton) against some schoolyard bullies (AJ Converse and Kelly Higgins.)
The imaginative nine-year old Sarazad finds a unique way to regain dominion over the swings. Her fantasies take her into a dream kingdom where the Monster-King (Dean Linnard) threatens to eat her. Just like the Scheherazade of the 1001 Nights, Sarazad weaves tales that are so diverting thatshe uses her skill at storytelling to save herself.
Written by EJC Calvert, “Sarazad and the Monster-King” will amuse both your children and their grandparents. “Sarazad and the Monster-King” is an update on the source material which is both funny and poignant.
To show how stories can save our lives, Frank McGuiness’s Tony-nominated play “Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me,” running through July 15, explores the same theme. In it three men who are political prisoners in Beirut find storytelling as a way to survive.
The TRUF and CPP invite a multi-generational dialogue to come out of its paired offerings. “Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me” is not recommended for anyone younger than teenagers, however. “Sarazad and the Monster-King,” will please children as young as five or six.
To find out more about the performance schedule and Canal Park Playhouse, visit www.canalparkplayhouse.com