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BWW JR: Story Pirates- It's Like SNL for Kids!

How often are you silly?  If you have little kids (which pretty much all of you reading this article do), you probably spend a lot of time trying to be silly or trying to make your kids laugh at how silly you are.  But I'm talking about that crazy, jittery, "take on the world" feeling of pure silliness that you get from riding a scooter or swimming at night or seeing a really, really, really funny show. 

I was actually in kind of a bad mood last Saturday when I arrived at the Drama Book Shop in midtown to see The Story Pirates' Mainstage show, and so was my seven year old daughter.  You remember last Saturday.  It was the day that New York melted.  It was so hot out, they had news coverage of some woman baking cookies on the hood of her car.  The last place we wanted to be was midtown, in a theatre, awake. 

About ten minutes in to the Story Pirates' hour-long show, I felt a wave of pure silliness wash over me.  This troop of professional actors and educators who create original musicals based on real stories written by kids are so funny, I would challenge anyone not to leave the theater feeling happy.  My daughter and I were both laughing so hard we had to cover our mouths.  What Story Pirates do so well is the thing I like best about good children's theatre: They make shows that appeal to kids with jokes that are genuinely funny to parents.

The show is just one piece of a multi-faceted arts and creative writing organization that promotes literacy and provides programming for underserved schools.  When they're not rocking the house in their Mainstage show with their improv-based wackiness, you can find the members of the Story Pirates company working with kids in over 150 schools across the country.

Here's how it works: Kids can submit stories through the company's website,  Check out the rules before you submit.  The Story Pirates then take the stories they receive and turn them into ten minute musical comedy sketches.  You might wait a few months for your turn, but your child can actually sit in the audience and watch the story that they wrote dramatized live on stage.  The show is tight, fast-paced and hilarious with the actors all playing various roles.  It's like SNL for kids. 

By purchasing a ticket to the show ($15 in advance, $20 at the door), you are supporting their arts in education programming for underserved public schools.  It's a nice perk (as was the air conditioning....thank you!).  The Story Pirates also do birthday parties, playdates, after-school programs (by request) and you can hire them to bring their classroom program to your school.

My only regret is that I didn't bring my three year old son.  I think he would have loved it,  and the available floor seating in the front of the house takes the pressure off of little kids who have a hard time sitting still.   On the other hand, when the show ended I did enjoy some quality mommy-daughter time as my daughter and I discussed our favorite parts over the free ice cream and cookies the Story Pirates serve to the audience.  There's nothing like pure silliness, a bowl of ice cream and a cookie with your daughter on a horribly hot day.  And no, they didn't bake the cookies on the hood of a car. 


  • A uniquely hilarious, musical, sketch comedy show based on real stories written by real kids.
  • Best for three through ten year olds.
  • Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door, donations welcome (and well used).
  • Shows are Saturdays at 2 PM at the Drama Book Shop, but check the show's website before you show up, especially during their limited summer schedule.

For more information visit the show's web site:

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    From This Author - Erin Leigh Peck

    Erin Leigh Peck is a New York based actor, writer and mother. She has performed on and off Broadway, in regional theatre and on tour, (read more...)