The New York Children's Theater Festival co-founders Michael Shawn Lewis, Chelsey Shannon, and Renee Barnett have announced the shows for its second season. This year's selections are all original premieres: The Tale of Jamie Freel: a Faerie Story; Cheater, Cheater, Pumpkin Eater!; and Molly Bloom Lately.
In making the announcement, The New York Children's Theater Festival co-founder Michael Shawn Lewis said, "We had so many wonderful submissions to choose from this year as word of the Festival spread to more creators of innovative and exciting children's theater who want to be a part of this growing platform to help artists bring their own shows to kids. These productions will bring audiences fresh entertainment and help further our mission to help support artists in increasing terrific offerings for children, and get even more kids to experience live theater."
The Tale of Jamie Freel: a Faerie Story (Friday, April 19, 5:30 PM; Saturday, April 20, 11:00 AM and 1:00 PM; Sunday, April 21, 2:00 PM) is a play with music and dance, written and created by Brad Raimondo. It is the story of a young man's search for adventure who uncovers a world of strange events, wild creatures, and faerie magic, as well as a kidnapped young lady in need of his help. For ages 7 to 10. New York Children's Theater Festival co-founder Michael Shawn Lewis says, "The Tale of Jamie Freel is a thrilling tale that truly transports the audience to the land of magical fantasy. The play's imaginative usage of music and movement helps weave the human world with the mystique and lore of the world of the Faeries."
Cheater, Cheater, Pumpkin Eater! (Friday, April 26, 5:30 PM; Saturday, April 27, 11:00 AM and 1:00 PM; Sunday, April 28, 2:00 PM) is a puppet musical written and created by Staci Rosen and Ryan Roe about honesty, friendship and believing in yourself. Maddie has to decide whether or not to cheat in order to become a star. As the story unfolds with great humor, Maddie and the audience learn the importance of integrity and being true to oneself. For ages 3 to 7. Festival co-founder Renee Barnett says, "Cheater Cheater, Pumpkin Eater! is a wonderful show with a great moral as well as super fun music. And, the best part is, it's told by puppets!"
Molly Bloom Lately (Friday, May 3, 5:30 PM; Saturday, May 4, 11:00 AM and 1:00 PM; Sunday, May 5, 2:00 PM) is a live musical for ages 5 to 10, with book and lyrics by Ashleigh Catsos, and music by Brian Ray Stearns. The educational and entertaining production tells the story of a third grader who, after being teased for being small, must learn to not only stand up for, but also believe in herself. The story encourages a celebration of individuality and to always be kind even when others are not. Chelsey Shannon, co-founder of the Festival says, ""Molly is an endearing story of courage and acceptance. The characters are colorful and the music is so wonderfully catchy that you are certain to leave singing the tunes long after the curtain falls. Molly's story is funny and sweet, and children will surely relate to her challenges and her victories."
The 2nd Annual New York Children's Theater Festival will open on Friday April 19 and run through Sunday May 5 at The Marjorie S. Deane Little Theater (10 West 64th Street at Central Park West). Tickets are $18 ($15 YMCA members) and available through Ovationtix, (866) 811-4111 and at the festival website, www.newyorkchildrenstheaterfestival.org beginning on March 1, 2013
The New York Children's Theater Festival provides a birthplace in New York City for new live children's entertainment from around the globe, and serves as a platform for writers and producers who are passionate about developing innovative theatrical experiences for children. The inaugural Festival in 2012 reached over 1,000 audience members and has already seen results for its participants: Go Green! received Honorable Mention in the Jackie White Memorial National Children's Playwriting Contest (Columbia Entertainment Company, Columbia, MO), and Scheme of the Super Bullies is in the planning stages of launching a local tour through The Sarah Lawrence College Theatre Outreach Program. The New York Children's Theater Festival is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. More at www.newyorkchildrenstheaterfestival.org and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/NYCTFest.