Youth theatre celebrated in Syracuse

staff reports 09/21/09
Preview, "The Song from the Sea."

Two open dress rehearsals planned for Saturday, Sept. 26
during Syracuse Stage's 2009 Open House

Directed by Lauren Unbekant
Scenic and Costume Design by Katrin Naumann
Sound Design by David Huber
Puppets by Gabriel Quirk

Each fall, Syracuse Stage and the Department of Drama at Syracuse University's College of Visual and Performing Arts (VPA) present the Bank of America Children's Tour, a high-energy, interactive and culturally diverse theatrical production for elementary school audiences. Touring this year, September 29-December 17, is The Song from the Sea by Mike Kenny. Open dress rehearsals, free and open to the public, are scheduled for 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, September 26 during Syracuse Stage's 2009 Open House. Recommended for pre-K and up, The Song from the Sea is made possible by support from Bank of America, the naming sponsor, with additional support from the John Ben Snow Memorial Trust.

The Song from the Sea is the spellbinding fantasy tale of Josh, a young boy who lives in a "very noisy house in a very noisy street in a very noisy city." Yet above all the clamor, Josh hears a mysterious, beautiful sound calling him toward the sea.

Performed in striking visual terms with puppetry and scenery, The Song from the Sea offers an extraordinary opportunity to share a rich theatrical experience. The director, designers, performers and production crew are students and professionals from the Syracuse University Department of Drama and Syracuse Stage.

"A journey of discovery all about learning to trust and believe in ourselves..." - Visible Fictions Theatre, UK

"A mesmerizing new show for children...magical and absorbing." - The Scotsman, UK

"A stand-out family theatre experience." - The LA Times

Mike Kenny (Playwright) has written over 60 plays, most for young audiences and many for audiences and actors with special needs. He was named one of the UK's top ten living playwrights by The Independent, and has won numerous awards, including the Writers' Guild of Britain's Best Children's Play (Stepping Stones) and the Arts Council of England's first Children's Award for Playwriting. His plays are performed regularly throughout the UK and across the world. Other children's plays by Mike Kenny: The Gardener, Diary of an Action Man,Stepping Stones, Stuck, Sink or Swim, Flags and Bandages, and many more.

Lauren Unbekant (Director) is the Director of Educational Outreach for Syracuse Stage and adjunct faculty for Syracuse University Drama Department. Lauren has worked extensively as a professional development consultant with organizations such as The Lincoln Center Institute for Aesthetic Education, Harvard's Project Zero, the National Performance Network and Partners for Arts Education. Ms. Unbekant is a Master Teaching Artist with nearly 20 years of experience connecting the Artist Process with all kinds of learning and has developed course work for educators in Critical thinking Through the Arts. As a co-founder of the physical theatre company Gams On The Lam and a solo performing artist with MoveInk, she has performed nationally and internationally at such festivals as the Humorologie Festival in Belgium, The International Festival De Pallesos in Barcelona, The International Movement Festival in London, The Festival of International Art in Leon and Puebla, Mexico and the HBO Comedy Festival in Aspen, CO. Lauren Holds a BFA in Musical Theatre from Syracuse University.

Daniel Burns (Josh) is a sophomore Acting major from Fort Lauderdale, FL. Past roles include Christopher Robin in A.A. Milne's Winnie the Pooh, Lloyd in Noises Off!, and Mr. Graydon in Thoroughly Modern Millie.

Sara Orr (Elsie/Mum) is a senior Acting major at Syracuse University. She recently participated in Syracuse University's London Abroad Program, where she appeared as Hermia in A Midsummer Night's Dream and Alice in Bird and the Two Ton Weight. Other recent credits include Equus and Hypochondriac with Black Box Players.

Chelsea Rolfes (Gran) is a junior Acting major from Cincinnati, OH. She was last seen as Sophie in The Fraying Persian as part of SU Drama's New Playwrights Festival. Other roles include The Singer in It Never Gets Soft (Starving Artists), Millie in Thoroughly Modern Millie, Poopsie in The Pajama Game, and Clairee Belcher in Steel Magnolias.

The Song from the Sea:

Overview of Syracuse Stage Education Programs:

The Bank of America Children's Tour brings high-energy, interactive, and culturally
diverse performances to elementary school audiences.

The BACKSTORY Program brings history to life, as professional actors portray
historical figures in classrooms and other venues.

Lockheed Martin PROJECT BLUEPRINT merges scientific discovery and the arts in
classrooms and other venues.

artsEMERGING takes students on an in-depth exploration of our mainstage season using a multi-cultural, multi-arts lens.

The Young Playwrights Festival challenges students to submit original ten-minute plays for a chance to see their work performed at Syracuse Stage.

VPA is committed to the education of cultural leaders who will engage and inspire audiences through performance, visual art, design, scholarship and commentary. It provides the tools for self-discovery and risk-taking in an environment that thrives on critical thought and action.

Syracuse Stage is Central New York's premier professional theatre. Founded in 1974, Stage has produced more than 220 plays in 36 seasons including a number of world, American, and East Coast premieres. Each season 90,000 patrons enjoy an adventurous mix of new plays and bold interpretations of classics and musicals featuring the finest theatre artists. In addition, Stage maintains a vital educational outreach program that annually serves over 30,000 students from 24 counties. A solid core of subscribers and supporters helps keep Syracuse Stage a vibrant artistic presence in Central New York. Additional support comes from the government, foundations, corporations and Syracuse University. Syracuse Stage is a constituent of the Theatre Communications Group (TCG), the national organization for the American theatre, and a member of the Syracuse Chamber of Commerce, the Arts and Cultural Leadership Alliance (ACLA), the University Hill Corporation and the East Genesee Regent Association. Syracuse Stage is a member of The League of Resident Theatres (LORT), the largest professional theatre association in the count.

CATEGORY: Performing Arts
TAGS: dress rehearsals,Song from the Sea,spellbinding fantasy tal,youth theater syracuse,Syracuse Stage,Department of Drama,Lauren Unbekant,Director of Educational Outreach,Syracuse University,College of Visual and Performing Arts,Bank of America Children's Tour
EDITION: The Eagle

Rating: 2.1/5 (10 votes cast)

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