July 18--Team Shakespeare, who brought us Shakespearean hokey pokey and sing-alongs that explain the plot of some of the bard's best-loved stories, will return for the fifth year with "Shakespeare For Kids," at the Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival in Center Valley.
This year the team will attempt to deconstruct Shakespeare's comedy "The Taming of the Shrew" for little ones Wednesday through Aug. 3 on the main stage at DeSales University's Labuda Center.
"Shakespeare for Kids" introduces children to the stories and language of Shakespeare through silly skits, music and games with a trio of players, a robot and puppets.
The show will open against the backdrop of the streets of Vienna from "Measure to Measure" which will be presented on the same stage in the evening.
In previous years the show, affectionately called S4K, tackled "Much Ado About Nothing," "A Midsummer Night's Dream," "Romeo and Juliet" and "Hamlet."
S4K has tackled Shakespeare productions that were being presented on festival stages at the same time, but this year is different. Festival Producing Artistic Director Patrick Mulcahy says the two Shakespeare productions being staged -- "Measure for Measure" and "King Henry VIII" -- are less well-known, so it was decided to focus the show on the better known "Taming of the Shrew" in which Petruchio, a gentleman of Verona, woos the ill-tempered Katherine.
Team Shakespeare includes returning member Brandon Meeks; new face Henry A. McDaniel III and recent DeSales grad Bonnie Jean Witkowski. Leo Bond also returns to bring life to Shobot, the team's robotic sidekick. Festival regular Matt Pfeiffer, who also directed "39 Steps," is director.
In this wacky take on the comedy, the actors, aided by sock puppets, portray the main characters of the story. They translate Shakespeare's poetic language into easy-to-understand prose. The hourlong show is recommended for age 4-10.
Tickets are $9. Shows are at 10 a.m. July 24-27 and July 30-Aug. 3.
Info: http://www.pashakespeare.org or 610-282-9455.
Are your kids interested in theater? Children ages 7-12 are invited to attend four free youth theater workshops presented by the Allentown Public Theatre beginning Saturday in St. Luke's Lutheran Church Community Room, 417 N. Seventh St., Allentown.
The workshops, which run 10-11:30 a.m. Saturday and July 27 and Aug. 3 and 10, are built around the play "Pinocchio," which Allentown Public Theatre will present in August.
Children will learn speaking, movement and other performance skills, as well as make their own puppets and develop characters. Children also can learn a dance they may perform during "Pinocchio."
Advance registration is recommended by emailing APTyouth@allentownpublictheatre.com.
Allentown Public Theatre will present Sam Kuglen's modern adaptation of the classic story about a wooden puppet who comes to life, Aug. 16-25 at St. Luke's. The show is free for children 12 and under and pay-as-you-will for adults.
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