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Disney's Beauty and the Beast
a Musical
CATEGORY : MUSICAL
by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman

COMPANY : Cobb Children's Theatre [WEBSITE]
VENUE : Jennie T. Anderson Theatre-Cobb Civic Center [WEBSITE]
ID# 3644

SHOWING : April 16, 2010 - April 18, 2010

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PRODUCTION DESCRIPTION

A full technical presentation of the Broadway classic. Performed in the 600 seat Jennie T. Anderson Theatre at the Cobb Civic Center. Intended for all audiences.

Two Acts, Book Musical, Rated G Original Broadway Version Step into the enchanted world of Broadway's modern classic! Based on the Academy-Award winning animated feature, the stage version of Disney's BEAUTY AND THE BEAST includes all of the wonderful songs written by Alan Menken and the late Howard Ashman along with new songs by Mr. Menken and Tim Rice. Your audiences will be transported to the heart of provincial life in a lovely French town. When Maurice becomes lost in the woods on the way to the fair, he seeks shelter in an old castle, but the master of the castle is a horrible beast that takes him captive. Maruice's daughter, Belle, must then give up her freedom to save his life. Belle's taming of the unfortunate Beast and his ultimate transformation back into a handsome prince enthralled Broadway audiences for over 13 years. This "tale as old as time" is filled with spectacular costume and set opportunities, or even more simply staged, Disney's BEAUTY AND THE BEAST offers a great opportunity to bring your entire community together for family theatre at its best.


CAST & CREW LIST
Director Ryan Karstensen
Mrs. Potts Payton Anderson
LeFou Stuart Anderson
Gaston Anthony Brinkley
Belle Ali Holliday
Babette Maddie Larson
Cogsworth Evan Macie
Madame de la Grand Bouche Rachel Mallis
Maurice Ryan Talley
Monsieur d'Arque Connor Taylor
Click to Submit Cast & Crew Info for this production
REVIEWS

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Somebody Else's Children
by Dedalus
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
4.0
This will be a difficult column to write. There are so many reasons not to even try – a one-weekend run already completed, an all-volunteer cast and crew mostly made up of kids and their parents, and a cast of kids, some of whom were having their first on-stage experience. In fact, the only reason to write it is because I was invited to the show and offered comps for myself and my daughter.

On the other hand, even though, for me, it was an experience much like watching other folks’ children doing a school play, my daughter absolutely enjoyed the experience, and there were some aspects of the production that sincerely deserve praise and publicity.

Let’s begin with Ali Holliday, the production’s “Belle.” Here is a high school freshman with a professional-quality belt voice, charm to spare, and an ability to grab an audience from her first entrance to her last embrace. She attacks the familiar songs from the Disney movie with a skill and an enthusiasm that should be the envy of any performer, and she sells the less familiar “A Change in Me” (written for the stage version) with an equal persuasion. Truth to tell, if this young lady pursues a singing career, I guarantee we’ll be seeing a lot more of her in the future.

I also have to commend the physical aspects of the show, the sets and costumes. I like how the several backdrops looked (no scenic artist is listed, so I’ll give credit to set designers Bryan Taylor and Katy Gardner). If the costumes were a tad too slavish to the Disney originals (probably a requirement of Disney’s no-doubt Byzantine Legal department), they nevertheless looked good and the cast seemed comfortable in even the most uncomfortable-looking creations (Mrs. Potts was required to spend the whole show with her arm in the air, and she made it look like the most natural position in the world).

The show itself is a treat to everyone who loved the Disney original, which, I have to confess, I did. All the characters are here, all the songs, and, if some of the more breathtaking moments of animation are by necessity missing, they are replaced by equally memorable moments of choreography and cuteness (you would have loved the tiny-tot teacups in “Be our Guest.”) The story of seeing-below-the-surface love and redemption is as compelling as always, and will certainly appeal to anyone with a taste for stories, for romance, and for seeing the “bad guy” get his comeuppance.

Cobb Children’s Theatre has been around for over thirty years, and is obviously a wonderful resource for giving tweens and teens a first taste of the theatre. They have a core group of fanatical volunteers who do good work, and, more important, impart a love a performing, a love of story-telling to the next generation of actors and sings, for which they are to be commended.

So, for an “outsider” like myself, it may not be as wonderful as watching a show featuring my own daughter, it was nevertheless not the chore you’d think watching “other people’s children” would be. And it is ALWAYS a joy discovering mature talent in one as young as Ms Holliday.

If you missed this show, you should definitely take your own kids to see their next offering!

-- Brad Rudy (BKRudy@aol.com)


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