SCERA Theatre for Young Audiences presents CAPTAIN LOUIE
The music of Stephen Schwartz, composer for such Broadway classics as "Wicked," "Pippin" and "Godspell," is one of the reasons director DeLayne Bluth Dayton is especially excited to bring "Captain Louie" to the SCERA Center for the Arts Oct. 16-Nov. 3.
"The Grammy-award winner has composed some amazing music for this darling family show," Dayton says. "There is a sort of 'Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat' feel to it as my actors perform a tango, some rapping, an eerie song and many other different styles of music and dance. The music advances the story and the dialogue guides us to the next song."
"Captain Louie" is SCERA's latest Theatre for Young Audiences show, a one hour musical designed for families to introduce their children to the magic of live theatre - and entertain adults as well. "Captain Louie" plays on Monday and Friday evenings at 7:00pm, and reserved-seat tickets are $6 for adults and $4 for children age 3-11 and seniors age 65 and older. 10am matinees for school groups of 20 or more are Monday-Friday, and reservations are required. Call 801-225-ARTS ext. 1011 to check group guidelines and availability.
Tickets are available at www.scera.org, by calling 801-225-ARTS, or at the main office at SCERA Center, 745 S. State Street, Orem, open 10am-6pm weekdays or at the ticket office 30 minutes prior to performance.
The musical begins with Louie, a young boy sitting on the steps of his new house. He observes other children playing and feels lonely as he sees them toss a ball, jump rope and participate in games. Afraid to join them because he's the new kid and they don't know him, he resorts to using his imagination. He puts things in a box and reimagines his old neighborhood. He then takes a little toy airplane to get there.
"We actually have designed a larger airplane for his flight based on the model airplane," Dayton says. "It will seem as if an airplane is transporting him to his former home and his friends. It should feel magical."
Louie doesn't recognize his friends at first, because it is Halloween night, and they are all wearing costumes. After some teasing and trickery, he feels happy and right at home. The evening continues as they help their friend Ziggy decorate his home for Halloween. They also make fun of the neighbors who have moved into Louie's previous home with a song about "loozas." What they don't realize is that Julia, who has joined them and has participated in the fun, is the new tenant. When they realize this, they realize they already like her, and all is well.
Louis begins to reconsider his new neighborhood. "He learns to avoid making assumptions about what people will think, and believes he can make new friends," Dayton explains. "It's a sweet message and Louie flies home to embrace his new life. In fact, when his new neighbors see him in his cool Captain Louie aviator costume, they immediately invite him to join the group."
"I know people will like 'Captain Louie' for the songs, but I also think the story will resonate with them," Dayton adds. "Who doesn't know a child who is feeling left out or apprehensive about a new situation? I love that the production shows different personalities and all the unique ways of being part of a group of friends. SCERA believes in theater that uplifts and supports family. I love being part of it."
As is characteristic of Theatre for Young Audiences, adults play the roles. This cast features Eric James Smith as Louie. Audiences may remember Eric as The Cat in the Hat in "Seussical The Musical" this past summer at SCERA Shell Outdoor Theatre, and as Scuttle in "The Little Mermaid." Other players are Kjersti Christensen, Kelli Dougal, Brooke Wray, Laura Chapman, Jacom Clarkson, Kaysie Norton, and Daisy Allred. Each wears a Halloween costume and has a distinct personality, including enthusiasm, caution, self-confidence, fun, leadership, and sweetness.
Assisting Dayton, are Shawn Mortensen, set designer and choreographer; Danielle Berry, stage manager; Kelsey Seaver, costume designer; Christy Norton, props designer; and Chase Elison, lighting and sound.