All of Creative PlayGround’s pieces have been developed to be suitable for children from 1-11 years of age. They are presented by a cast of three, professional adult actors, “in-the-round” with the children sitting on the stage, close to the performers, thus remaining completely engaged with and involved in the story and action of the play.
All Creative PlayGround Family Fundays performances start at 11:00 am.
Tickets are $9 for everyone. Children under 2 yrs are free.
Click on the dates below to purchase tickets. Click on the show title to learn more about each play!
2019 Schedule – Creative PlayGround at Family Fundays
Legendary philosopher and conflict resolver Aesop opens this presentation of several of his most popular Fables. Audience members not only participate in, but also help to find the morals of The Tortoise and the Hare, The Wind and the Sun, The Country Mouse and the City Mouse, and The Lion and The Mouse (this fable told completely in rhyming verse!). Performed all together they create a 45 minute presentation.
Performances: June 2 and October 6
This piece brings to life Munro Leaf’s story about a young bull who does not like to fight. Emphasizing values of non-violence and tolerance for individual differences, this story encourages us all to accept and celebrate individuality not only in others, but in ourselves as well.
Children are transported to Ferdinand’s meadow in Spain – a beautiful spot presided over by the “cork” tree who serves as our touchstone throughout the story; we meet Ferdinand, a young bull who likes to make up stories and imagine things, who enjoys nature and a peaceful afternoon smelling the flowers. A bull who does not wish to fight. Added to this adaptation is the character of Sammy, a young cow who dreams of traveling to Madrid to participate in the bullfights, even though she is a girl. We watch as Ferdinand’s mother struggles between her love for her son and her desire that he fit in. And finally, after his fateful encounter with the bee, we travel with Ferdinand to the bullfights in beautiful Madrid where PoPo the Picador and BamBam the Bandelliero learn that not all bulls fight! In the end, Ferdinand journeys home having stayed true to his nature and rejoins his meadow, his flowers, and his dear friends Sammy and the tree.
Audience members participate from the moment they arrive, working with the actors before the show to make pipe-cleaner flowers that are thrown into the ring during the bullfight. Volunteers become the other young bulls of the meadow as well as the Men from Madrid who are looking for bulls to fight. All are invited to help Ferdinand create stories using their imagination and one youngster even becomes the Matador!
Performances: June 9 and October 13
This piece explores those values most important to the Arthurian legend. As they people this Medieval world of magic, the audience learns that might is not right; that being kind is the better way to be; and that all people (even Kings) are created equal.
From the moment the audience arrives, they become lords and ladies at a festival in honor of King Arthur and Queen Guenevere. Merlin performs his own very special brand of magic and an afternoon of revelry begins! Inspired by Merlin’s magic, Arthur decides to retell the stories of his past adventures – stories that are represented by the symbols on the brightly colored banners that encircle the audience.
The first legend, a story of Arthur’s experience as a falcon, is told in co-operative improvisation by the cast and several audience members. Then it is Merlin’s turn to tell a story. He reminds Arthur of the first time they met – when Arthur the King was just a blubbering boy!
Arthur remembers how he discovered the joy of being a hero who helps people, not just a “village pillager.” Members of the audience play knights and villagers, helping to retell the tale. Next, Queen Guenevere tells the story of how she and Arthur met and worked together to “capture” the not-so-ferocious dragon Max. Once again, the audience gets into the act playing a very important role: Max’s dragon tail! The last legend relates the story of that best know symbol of King Arthur of Camelot: The Round Table. Together we discover how a table with neither a head nor a foot reinforced the important idea of equality.
As an activity before the show, students are given a sheet of paper with the outline of a coat of arms and encouraged to think of symbols for the things/people most important in their lives. Drawing these symbols in each of the crest’s four spaces will create their own coat of arms. Lines below the drawing are left for students to describe the images in words.
Performances: June 16 and August 17
Adapted from Margery Williams’ classic tale of true friendship and what it means to be “really real,” Creative PlayGround’s version of this most wonderful story modernizes language and locale but retains the original heart. Audience members participate in this play from its opening moment as both guests and gifts at the young protagonist Billy’s birthday party. Presents range from an erector set to a video game – all very exciting – but the gift Billy comes to love the most is a stuffed Velveteen Rabbit who becomes his best friend, his confidant and his partner on adventures. The Velveteen Rabbit first comes alive for Billy and the audience through an interactive improvisation of the Adventure of The California Kid and his Sidekick Spot. During this adventure, and the ones that follow, Spot and Billy learn about trust, communication, cooperation, success, failure and how much fun it can be to pretend. Through his imaginary play, the Velveteen Rabbit becomes real to Billy – and the young eyes in the audience – and Billy learns that real love and friendship have nothing to do with what you look like or what you have. The power of true friendship resides in what you share.
This adapted version of the story retains Margery Williams’ original ending in which the Velveteen Rabbit must be destroyed to keep Billy safe from the residual germs of a recent bout with a “fever.” When the Nursery Magic Fairy comes to take the Velveteen Rabbit away and make him “really real,” each audience member is challenged to think about, question and start to define what that means to them.
Performances: June 23 and October 20
A suiting Prince becomes Swineherd to woo and win the heart of a spoiled young Princess, teaching her in the process to see worth in terms other than material value. After their marriage, the happy couple become rulers of the land. As Emperor, the ex-Swineherd thinks only of his wardrobe, neglecting his kingdom entirely. But two charlatan tailors come and teach him about the dangers of vanity. Time passes and the couple’s son comes of age. The young Prince must find a bride and, for his mother, (the spoiled young Princess turned Queen) only a proper princess with proper papers will do. Of course, the lovely girl who arrives is authenticated by a Pea, but her true worth is seen from the first moment by the simple Prince who loves her for who – not what – she is.
Performances: June 30 and July 20