Literature Comes to Life in CSM Children’s Theatre production of ‘The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe’ Beginning Oct. 7

The Pevensie children

Three Performances Will Take Theatergoers to the Land of Narnia

Literature will come to life during the upcoming season of the College of Southern Maryland's Children's Theatre. Three children's plays to be presented in the 2016-17 season are stories adapted from books.

First up will be three performances of “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe,” Joseph Robinette's dramatization of the C.S. Lewis classic, beginning on Oct. 7. The play will be directed by Sherry Santana.

The story is set in the land of Narnia, recreating the magic and mystery of Aslan, the great lion, his struggle with Jadis, Witch Queen, and the adventures of four children who inadvertently wander from an old wardrobe into the never-to-be-forgotten Narnia. The intense action features chases, duels and escapes as the witch is determined to keep Narnia in her possession and to end the reign of Aslan.

Santana, a mainstay in the local theater community, studied theater at Ball State and Towson University. “The theater, it's my love,” she said. “It's my passion.”

She has spent more than 40 years acting, and directing has been newly added to her resume.

“I've been fortunate enough for about six years to direct, mostly children's theater,” she said. “But I will direct anything Keith asks me to direct.”

Keith Hight is the technical director and associate professor in CSM's Theatre Department and the person who plans which plays will be performed.

So while the Children's Theatre will offer plays this season based on literature, there is also a connection with the play, “Shadowlands,” which will be performed in the spring during the Renaissance Festival. That play is the story of writer C.S. Lewis, who wrote “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe,” and his wife.

“Hight chooses the plays for the season based on a lot of criteria,” Santana said. “And he tries to make them thematic. So there's this juxtaposition of these two productions.”

For the production of “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe,” Santana said she has worked very closely with Hight on concepts for costuming and set design. He has some very talented people in his department to take charge of those details, she said.

Santana said the play has about 30 actors in the cast, and they come from all over the tri-county area.

The cast includes Olivia Hutchins as Lucy, Joshua Smith as Edmund, Claire Alcorn as Susan, Patrick Dolan as Peter, Gershawn Mason as Aslan, Nathan Daetwyller as Tumnus,
Andrew Geier as Mr. Beaver, Olivia Bynum as Mrs. Beaver, Ken LaClaire as Father Christmas, Danielle LeDoux as Jadis, Niambi King as Dwarf, Frank Bowles as Fenris Ulf, Brioni Baldwin as Good Centaur, Chris Fleming as Unicorn, Ciara Levins as Wood Nymph, Kehle Hatch as Wood Nymph, Emily Roell as Wood Nymph and Aurielle Mitchell as Elf. The Followers will be Mitchell, Niah King, Rory Daetwyller, Jamie Slack, Holly Cholleo, Jaia Parker, Colin Takeuchi, Tianna Vines, Samahria McIntyre, Riasa Lees, Elizabeth Dolan and Katie Dolan.

Shows will be held on the Fine Arts (FA) Building stage on the La Plata Campus at 8730 Mitchell Road at 7 p.m. Oct. 7, and 2 and 7 p.m. Oct. 8.

Tickets are $7 for adults and seniors, $5 for youth of high school age and below. Tickets may be purchased online at www.csmd.edu/community/the-arts/season-tickets/. For more information, email bxoffc@csmd.edu, call 301-934-7828, or visit www.csmd.edu/community/the-arts/theatre-and-dance/childrens–theatre/index.

The play is being produced by special arrangement with the Dramatic Publishing Company of Woodstock, Illinois.

In February, Children's Theatre will present “A Wrinkle in Time” adapted from the novel by Madeleine L'Engle. “Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Musical,” based on the book of the same name by Mo Willems, will be performed in March.

Auditions for those plays will be held at 6 p.m. Nov. 14 and 15 at the FA Building for actors 8 and older.

 

Calendar

CSM Children's Theatre: “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe” 7 p.m. Oct. 7, and 2 and 7 p.m. Oct. 8. College of Southern Maryland, La Plata Campus, Fine Arts (FA) Building, Theater, 8730 Mitchell Road, La Plata. The play is a dramatization of C.S. Lewis' classic, set in the land of Narnia, recreating the magic and mystery of Aslan, the great lion, his struggle with Jadis, Witch Queen, and the adventures of four children who inadvertently wander from an old wardrobe into the never-to-be-forgotten Narnia. $7 adults and seniors, $5 youth of high school age and below. bxoffc@csmd.edu, 301-934-7828, www.csmd.edu/community/the-arts/theatre-and-dance/childrens–theatre/index.

 

CSM Children's Theatre: “A Wrinkle in Time” 7 p.m. Feb. 3, and 2 and 7 p.m. Feb. 4. College of Southern Maryland, La Plata Campus, Fine Arts (FA) Building, Theater, 8730 Mitchell Road, La Plata. One of literature's most enduring young heroines. Meg Murray is back, joining others to battle the forces of evil so she can rescue her father, save humanity and find herself. $7 adults and seniors, $5 youth of high school age and below. bxoffc@csmd.edu, 301-934-7828, www.csmd.edu/community/the-arts/theatre-and-dance/childrens–theatre/index.

 

CSM Children's Theatre: “Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Musical” 7 p.m. March 10, and 2 and 7 p.m. March 11. Girl loves stuffed animal. Girl loses beloved animal. Girl fights to get animal back. Trixie, her father and her favorite stuffed bunny set off on a trip to the laundry. The trip brings wonder, excitement and joy to the lively toddler, until she realizes she has left her Knuffle Bunny back at the laundromat. $7 adults and seniors, $5 youth of high school age and below. bxoffc@csmd.edu, 301-934-7828, www.csmd.edu/community/the-arts/theatre-and-dance/childrens–theatre/index.

 

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