Little Mermaid Jr. opens at Northbrook Theatre this weekend
Ariel and her prince act out a scene from "The Little Mermaid" above the waves. Courtesy\Northbrook Park District
Updated: April 15, 2013 6:35AM
NORTHBROOK — The Northbrook Theater Children’s Company on Sunday will take fellow voyagers beneath the sea to visit a magical underwater kingdom in Disney’s “The Little Mermaid Jr.” opening at the Northbrook Theatre.
Young actors in different casts will present the musical at 12:30 p.m. and 4 p.m. March 17 at the Northbrook Theatre, 3323 Walters Ave.
Tickets range from $8 to $10 and are expected to sell out, said Gregg Dennhardt, performing arts manager for the Northbrook Park District.
“We chose to do this production because of the kids’ remarks as to what shows they would like to do and this is a very good rendition of the story,” Dennhardt said.
“The Disney version’s songs and story line have made it very popular. The kids really respond to it.”
The musical tells the story of a beautiful mermaid, Ariel, who wants to leave her underwater home.
But to do that, Ariel must defy her father, King Triton, make a deal with the evil sea witch, Ursula, and convince Prince Eric that it is Ariel’s voice that he finds so enchanting.
The actors in The Little Mermaid are students in grades six to 10, both residents and non-residents of Northbrook, Dennhardt said. Two Northbrook participants who hope to make acting their careers have lead roles.
“I like the thrill of just being on stage and the songs are all so fun. I also love not being able to talk for half the show, because I can use expressions,” said Sara Dolins, 13.
“The most challenging part is finding the water part of me, because half the time we are supposed to be under water.”
Garrett Shuman, 14, who plays Prince Eric said it is fun playing the part, because he doesn’t live in a castle and doesn’t lead a royal life.
“It’s also fun because the synergy we have here is great. Being part of the productions teaches you a lot and I would recommend it to anyone interested in theater,” he added.
Dennhardt noted that he tries to expose as many young people as possible to the arts.
“We stress building character and bringing about the very best production we can as a team,” he added. “And we have a lot of fun doing it. It keeps the kid in me alive.”
A grant from the Illinois Arts Council provides partial funding for the production. For tickets or more information, call the Performing Arts Office at (847) 291-2367 or visit northbrooktheatre.org.