Live theater is finally returning to the Matthews Opera House & Arts Center with the upcoming children’s theatre production performed by the Froelich Young Actors Guild.
Actors ages 2nd – 6th grade will be performing Once Upon A Shoe or The Rhymes and Mimes of Mother Goose and Her Traveling Troubadours by Joseph Robinette on Friday, June 25 at 7:00 pm. Actors ages 7th – 12th grade will be performing All I Really Need to Know I Learned by Being in a Bad Play by Werner Trieschmann on Saturday, June 26 at 7:00 pm. There will also be a special double feature matinee of both shows on June 17 at 2:00 pm.
Tickets for all three performances are on sale now at matthewsopera.com. Tickets for the Friday and Saturday performances are $8 for adults and $5 for youth ages 18 and under. Sunday’s matinee tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for youth.
“It’s been so wonderful to have these young actors back on stage,” said Darren Granaas, executive director at the Matthews. “We have loved hearing their rehearsals during our work day. They have been working really hard on these performances.”
Elysia Pederson is directing Once Upon A Shoe. This is her second time directing for the Froelich Young Actors Guild, having previously directed We Are Monsters in 2019.
In Once Upon a Shoe, Mother Goose sadly announces to her children that they must leave their home—a large, comfortable shoe—and move to an old sneaker “across the tracks.” The children decide to “put on a show” to save their shoe, and in the best Garlandooney tradition, they proceed to enact eight of Mother Goose’s best poems.
BHSU student Gabriella Hertz is directing the 7th-12th grade production. She most recently directed the virtual children’s theatre play Mirror, Mirror: A Virtual Fractured Fairy Tale for the Matthews Opera House earlier this year.
Based on several disastrous theatrical experiences, All I Really Need to Know I Learned by Being in a Bad Play peels back a tattered curtain to examine the process of putting on a show that is less than good.
Both shows are family-friendly comedies that Granaas said the whole crew at home will enjoy.
Granaas added that the return of live theatre to the Matthews is something he has looked forward to since having to halt live productions in March of 2020.
“It’s such a relief to be on the other side and back to preparing for audiences. We really hope as many people as possible will come out, support these kids, and enjoy spending time, once again, watching live theatre in our beautiful opera house.