NEW JUICY-JUICE IN OLD BOTTLES
Bethesda-based Imagination Stage will feature some familiar stories given brand-new contexts in 2013-2014, the company has announced.
Perhaps the most radical transformation has been given to the ancient fairy tale Cinderella, which will appear on Imagination’s stage as Cinderella: the Remix, from April 9 to May 25 of next year. This decidedly contemporary play tells the story of an impoverished child who spends her life in Step Mama’s basement dreaming of becoming a DJ in a land where no females may DJ and frontin’ is a crime, punishable by life in a solitary confinement with only the music of Kenny G for company. When the J-Prince announces auditions for a Jam, Cinderella disguises herself as a boy and gets the gig – at least until midnight. Cinderella: the Remix comes from the fertile pen of Psalmayene 24, who also directs; Nick Hernandez provides the Hip-Hop beats. Cinderella: the Remix is recommended from ages 5 through 10.
Even more ancient than Cinderella is the Brontosaurus (aka Apatosaurus), a humongous creature (about 75 feet long, weighing roughly fifty thousand pounds) which walked the earth one hundred fifty million years ago. Naturally, young Lulu wants one as a pet for her birthday, and when her parents are discouraging she goes about finding one for herself. In Judith Viorst’s original musical (taken from her own book), Lulu and the Brontosaurus, Lulu finds her Brontosaurus – and he finds her, and wants Lulu as a pet. Imagination’s Artistic Director Janet Stanford directs this production (music is by Shelly Markham), which kicks off Imagination’s season from September 25 to October 27, 2013. Imagination recommends this play for those from ages 5 through 12.
Once the Brontosaurus moves out of Imagination’s digs he will be replaced by a crocodile – specifically, Lyle the Crocodile, who ensconces himself in the Primm family’s apartment bathtub. Lyle, whose life skills include playing the saxophone, ingratiates himself with the Primms but not with their neighbor, Mr. Grouch, who is against Lyle because he is different (and not, apparently, because he is a 20-foot-long, 2,500 pound predator with fearsome teeth.) Kathryn Chase Bryer will direct this play, which Kevin Kling has adapted from the books Lyle, Lyle Crocodile and The House on 88th Street by Bernard Waber. (Music by Richard Gray). This production, recommended for ages 4 through 12, will run from November 20, 2013 to January 14, 2014.
Did you get your current job this way? Rumpelstiltskin’s dad bragged that she could spin straw into gold, and the greedy King then demanded that she do her thing for the benefit of the Kingdom. Desperate, the eponymous heroine of Mike Kenny’s Rumpelstiltskin, running from February 5 to March 16 of next year, turns to a highly unethical fairy for help. Stanford will direct. (NOTE: This is not a solution to the Federal Budget Crisis.) For ages five through ten.
Finally, the Imagination season will close with BFG (Big Friendly Giant), David Wood’s adaptation of a Roald Dahl story about a – well, about a big friendly giant. This one seeks to save the children of the world from other, less pleasant, giants and so joins forces with Sophie, a child insomniac, for a visit to Buckingham Palace. Say hello to Liz for us! BFG, which runs from June 25 to August 10, 2014, is aimed at ages four through ten. Bryer will direct.
For subscription information, call the Imagination Stage box office, 301.280.1660.