Theatre Raleigh, the local theater company launched by Broadway star and Raleigh native Lauren Kennedy, is expanding its family offerings this coming season with two shows - "The Wolf," a mash up of various fairy tales, and a new take on the classic "A Midsummer Night's Dream."
Theatre Raleigh, part of our Made by Mom Gift Guide, premiered "The Wolf," an original show written for the company, in 2015. The hour-long piece, which has been wildly popular, turns the story of the Big Bad Wolf on its head. It's a really fun show, great for preschoolers to even tweens, and is presented in the Kennedy Theatre at the Duke Energy Center for Performing Arts.
Here's what I wrote about it last year: "Inside the black-box theater, the action - theater, dance and some pretty amazing acrobatics - takes place in the middle of the audience - and sometimes even in the seats. It's an intimate production with great appeal for kids. They're not just watching the show, but, at times, almost part of it - just steps away from the actors."
"The Wolf" runs March 23 to 26 and March 30 to April 2 - just after "A Midsummer Night's Dream."
This new take on Shakespeare's comedy classic is designed for all ages and will run about 45 minutes. It's on stage at the Kennedy Theatre from March 9 to March 12 March 16 to March 19.
The show, Kennedy, who also is the artistic director, tells me "will make you wonder why you were ever so scared of Shakespeare! With dancing, pop music and magic, it is going to capture the imagination of kids of all ages, yet is sophisticated enough to being enjoyed by parents alike."
Kennedy, whose daughter Riley also has appeared in some of the productions, said she's thrilled to be expanding Theatre Raleigh's offerings for families.
"We are so excited to be dreaming up some new fun in our family series," Kennedy tells me. "It is the most joyous part of my job - entertaining the next generation of theatre goers! Teaching them that seeing theatre is a lifestyle! We have two shows poised to turn them into life long theatre lovers!