The cast of “Little Mermaid Jr.” at Mountain Green Elementary School invites the community to become “part of their world” and join them for a journey “under the sea” on Friday, April 13 and Saturday, April 14. There will be two productions each evening, one at 5:30 pm and 7:30 pm, in the MGES gymnasium. Join the cast for an evening of song, dance and fun. With a running time of just over an hour and fifteen minutes, “Little Mermaid Jr.” is a perfect outing for kids (and adults) of all ages!
Director Liza Telford, mom of James—a second grader who is a sailor, sea creature and chef in the production, brought the “Little Mermaid Jr.” to MGES in conjunction with the MGES PTSO and Spotlight Children’s Theater of Centerville. “I first found out about Spotlight when I attended a production at a Davis County elementary school. My nieces and nephews were in the play and I wanted to find out more about it.”
Spotlight Children’s Theater provides an opportunity for schools with smaller arts programs to stage full productions. Spotlight provides the costumes, scenery, props and sound and advertises: “All you have to provide is the students.” As well as the logistics, Spotlight handles the auditions and provides support during Tech Week leading up to the performances.
Parent volunteers are crucial to the success of the production. Mountain Green parents have volunteered to completely choreograph, instruct and practice the dances, teach students the music, rehearse lines, organize and move scenery, sew up costumes and advertise the production. Each child pays a registration fee to participate to offset the costs not covered by the ticket sales. Parents are able to volunteer time to reduce their registration fees so participation is not limited by ability to pay.
“When I was in school, I was in school plays, and I loved it,” Telford reminisced. “It was so much fun, and I have such fond memories of being in school plays each year that I wanted it for my children. When we moved to Morgan, I missed it. After watching my nieces and nephews in their plays, I got a ‘bee in my bonnet’ and wanted to make it happen for my kids and the kids at their school.”
“Thanks to the wonderful volunteers and a generous donation from the PTSO we were able to provide this opportunity for the kids here,” she explained. “It has been great to give kids an opportunity to try out theater. “
Parent volunteer Stacey Roundy, whose son, Sam, will be Sebastian in the blue cast, has been thrilled with the production and opportunities it has provided her son. “We moved here from Seattle in the middle of the school year last year,” she shared. “It was very hard for my kids to integrate into the community and find a place because my kids were more academic, arts and technology oriented. My son has found a place here in this production. It has been a gift for him to finally find a place in a community that generally values outdoor activities like hunting and football. It has given him new confidence, friends and purpose.”
“Participating in this play has given him confidence in himself and allowed him to meet other kids who enjoy performing and the arts,” she enthused.
With 112 students from second to fifth grade participating in the two casts, “Little Mermaid Jr.” will give a number of performers an opportunity to shine. The yellow cast will be astounding audiences Friday at 5pm and Saturday at 7:30pm with the blue cast dazzling spectators on Friday at 7:30pm and Saturday at 5pm. Tickets are $6 at the door the night of the performance.