Lyric Opera of Chicago Presents Kid-Friendly Opera POPCORN & PASCALE 12/02

Lyric Opera of Chicago Presents Kid-Friendly Opera POPCORN & PASCALE 12/02

Lyric Opera of Chicago just announced its 70-minute opera adventure created especially for kids ages 5-12 and their families, called, Popcorn & Pasquale. This show, written by David Kersnar (Lookingglass Theater Company) and Jacqui Russell (Chicago Children's Theater), takes place at the Civic Opera House on Sunday, December 2 at 2pm.

Tickets for Popcorn & Pasquale are $10, $15, and $20 for children 12 and under, and $20, $30, and $40 for everyone else. Click here to purchase tickets.

The fun performance features the stars of Lyric's Don Pasquale production – Ildebrando D'Arcangelo, Marlis Petersen, René Barbera, and Corey Crider, plus the Lyric Opera Orchestra and Chorus and special guest actor Ross Lehman.

Writer David Kersnar is a founding member of Lookingglass Theater Company, and Jacqui Russell is a writer of children's plays and a cofounder of Chicago Children's Theater. "We've created situations so youngsters in the audience can see themselves onstage," says Kersnar. "They see someone like them with problems that are real and meaningful to them. There's an interactive quality so that kids will feel as though they're pulled up onstage." The program is adapted from Lyric's mainstage production of Don Pasquale, directed by Sir Thomas Allen. Elise Sandell will direct this delightful family-friendly rendition.

Lehman debuted as Cap'n Andy in Lyric's Show Boat last season. His extensive Chicago credits include numerous roles with Chicago Shakespeare Theater, the Goodman Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre, Marriott Lincolnshire, and Writers' Theatre, plus several Broadway productions.  Child actor Nathan Randall will join Lehman in playing servants in the Pasquale household.

The two actors will guide the audience through selected scenes from Donizetti's sparkling comedy. They help the audience get to know the opera's characters and what they really think about each other – a nobleman of a certain age, his young nephew, the pretty girl they both want to marry, and the clever friend who works it out so everyone winds up happy.  Kids and their families will experience selected songs and scenes, watch demonstrations of set changes and other stagecraft, enjoy opportunities for audience participation, and bring home a special activity-filled printed program for kids and grownups to enjoy together.

"We want families who, for whatever reason, have never been here together before to come to this wonderfully entertaining and interactive performance and get a taste of what we're all about," says Anthony Freud, Lyric's general director. "With Popcorn & Pasquale parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and others can share the wonder of opera – the sets and costumes, the storytelling and singing, the beautiful opera house itself – with youngsters as a family outing on a Sunday afternoon. Our cast and orchestra members are delighted to engage in this whimsical 'show and tell' experience, and we're very pleased to have the captivating Ross Lehman as our guide." And yes, Freud added, "popcorn will be on sale at the opera house!"

Popcorn & Pasquale is a project of Lyric Unlimited. Lyric Unlimited is a new, multifaceted program of expanded community engagement and artistic initiatives that includes Lyric's longstanding education programs.

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