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Treasured stories come to life!

by on March 26, 2013

26_BrownBearMermaid’s much-anticipated new production, A Brown Bear, a Moon, and a Caterpillar: Treasured Stories by Eric Carle takes to the Playhouse stage on Sunday, April 7 at 2pm. Featuring evocative music, stunning visual effects and innovative puppetry, the triple-bill celebrates three of Eric Carle’s most beloved tales: The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Brown Bear, Brown Bear What Do You See? and Papa Please Get The Moon For Me.

A veteran of more than 2200 performances, The Very Hungry Caterpillar joins a whimsical menagerie drawn from the pages of Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? The poignant story of a young girl’s unusual quest, Papa, Please Get the Moon For Me, completes a fanciful hour-long production that is guaranteed to entertain and educate a new generation of theatregoers.

Audiences familiar with Mermaid’s earlier adaptations of Eric Carle’s books can expect the same attention to detail that has won international acclaim for the company. The use of black light for some aspects of the show will enable puppets and props to make their appearances as if they are animated on their own. The final story in the trilogy will incorporate the magic of both projection techniques and shadow puppetry. Multiple narrators add a new dimension, featuring the lyrical talents of Nova Scotia’s Richard Donat, and a vibrant chorus of elementary school students from Hantsport School, situated on the shore of Nova Scotia’s Minas Basin.

On the road continuously since 1999, Mermaid’s The Very Hungry Caterpillar (a component of assorted compilations with four other Eric Carle stories) has generated remarkable statistics and earned considerable praise from audiences on several continents. Close to 1,500,000 spectators in twelve countries have applauded the ravenous green fellow.

First published in 1967, Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? was written and illustrated by Bill Martin, Jr and Eric Carle, and has served to help hundreds of thousands of toddlers to associate colors and meanings to objects. Capturing the rhythmic text and beautiful tissue-paper collage illustrations of the classic picture book, Mermaid’s adaption generates fresh appreciation of the endearing cast of characters.

Regarded as one of Eric Carle’s most imaginatively-designed works, Papa, Please Get the Moon For Me, has been delighting young audience since its publication in 1986. Mermaid’s version mirrors the book’s stunning illustrations, drawn in thick, brilliant brushstrokes of blues and greens and dazzling reds. An unusual quest for a unique plaything – the moon – offers a splendid introduction to the wonderment of the lunar cycle.

Mermaid’s accomplished creative teams, widely respected for their unique and well-travelled collaborations, have reprieved their roles to create Treasured Stories. Jim Morrow has ingeniously adapted the Carle stories from page to stage, as well as served as Director and Production Designer. Steven Naylor has created the musical score and overseen the recording of the narration. Daun Windover and Bob Williams contributed to videography and animation elements, while Struan Robertson and Deborah MacLean have lent their production and design skills. Company members include performers Sarah Jean Begin and Jonny Thompson, and stage manager Shawn Sorensen.

Following its premiere at New York University’s prestigious Skirball Performing Arts Centre in October 2011, the show delighted more than 137,000 spectators before returning to its home base in Windsor, Nova Scotia some eight months later. Repeat engagements for Treasured Stories will take the company from coast to coast in 2012/2013 as they visit communities stretching from Maine to California in the United States, and from Nova Scotia to British Columbia in Canada.

Please note: The performance on April 7 is a pyjama party, so don’t forget to come dressed in your favourite PJs!

Tickets for A Brown Bear, a Moon and a Caterpillar are available at the Fredericton Playhouse box office 1-866-884-5800, or online at www.theplayhouse.ca.

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