.

BRAVO Set World Premiere of James and the Giant Peach Jr

James and the Giant Peach Cast with Tim McDonald from New York's iTheatrics!
James and the Giant Peach Cast with Tim McDonald from New York's iTheatrics!
Opening Night is July 17
The Bravo Performing Arts Academy, which in January was named for the fifth consecutive year the country's most outstanding production company at the national Junior Theater Festival, is pleased to announce that its 12th summer season will include the world premiere of the "junior" version of James and the Giant Peach, the Roald Dahl classic about an orphan boy who takes a fantastical journey in a giant peach.

James and The Giant Peach Jr. opens at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, July 17, with additional performances scheduled at 11 a.m., Friday, July 18, and 11 a.m. and 7:30 p.m., Saturday, July 19. All shows are at Brooks Middle School, (address). Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for students and seniors.

This marks the fourth time New York City-based Music Theater International (MTI) has asked Bravo to debut a junior production of a well-known Broadway production. Other exclusive premiers that MTI has asked Bravo to produce include Fame Jr., Hairspray Jr., and Legally Blonde Jr. 

"We are absolutely thrilled that MTI has asked Bravo to produce the first version of James and the Giant Peach Jr.," said Bravo Artistic Director Tina Reynolds. "Everyone associated with Bravo, especially the children on the casts and crews of all our productions and the parents who support them, should be proud of this honor. It's an enormous privilege, and we look forward to doing our very best," she said.

This will be only the second time the world has the opportunity to see this show off Broadway and the first time ever for the “junior” version,” which Music Director Cameron Burgess explained isn’t junior at all.

“The show length is better suited for kids and the music is modified for their vocal range, but the overall show is anything but junior. This is a wonderful presentation of the music and lyrics by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul,” said Burgess.

Pasek and Paul are Tony Award-winning composers who are tearing up Broadway with their recent successes in shows like A Christmas Story and Dogfight. “It’s great to teach kids the newest and best of what Broadway has to offer,” said Burgess.

The story of James and the Giant Peach Jr. revolves around James, an orphan who finds a loving family in the most extraordinary way. Sent by his mean, conniving aunts to live with another set of mean, conniving aunts, James is ordered to chop down their old fruit tree. In process, James discovers a magic potion that results in a tremendous peach occupied by some not-so-normal characters.
 
From the center of the gigantic fruit, James and his unlikely crew of new friends launch a journey of enormous proportions. Together they discover that while we are all born into a family, we then go on to create a family of our own. With a truly exciting musical score, sophisticated set design, dazzling costumes and remarkable puppetry, Bravo’s version of James and the Giant Peach will be hard to match. 

To facilitate Bravo's production of James, Reynolds said an MTI team traveled to Oak Park recently to work with the cast, crew and directors. “We were thrilled to have MTI Playwright Tim McDonald work with us on James, so to have the him here was a huge honor and helped the kids be the best story-tellers they can be,” said Reynolds.

Reynolds said that when McDonald was at Bravo, he explained that it was selected to premiere James because, as he put it, “Bravo is one of the best in the world and its shows are top-notch quality.

“But more important,” said McDonald, “Tina and the entire team at Bravo are doing musicals with kids for the right reason: it makes life better. As we say in James and the Giant Peach, ‘what could go wrong singing a song’ and that is what you are doing here all summer long!”

In addition to James, Bravo is currently presenting ALICE! at 7:30 p.m., July 10, 11 and 12 at Madison Street Theater, 1010 W. Madison Street,  Oak Park, IL 60304. 
Bravo also will perform High School Musical 2 at 7:30 p.m., Wednesday, July 16; 7:30 p.m., Friday, July 18; and 2 p.m., Saturday, July 19. All shows will be at Brooks Middle School.

More information on tickets, performances and Bravo is available at http://www.op97.org/bravo/index.cfm, or by calling Bravo at 708-524-5621. 

Boards

More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »