BOONE—Audience members of all ages are invited to help the Appalachian Young People’s Theatre (AYPT) create the magic of “Aladdin: A Participation Play,” by noted children’s theatre author Moses Goldberg. The family-friendly production will be presented on the Appalachian State University campus in the I. G. Greer Studio Theater at 7 p.m. on April 1 with 2 p.m. matinee performances on April 2 and 3. Ticket prices are $5 for children and university students and $10 for adults. To learn more, visit http://theatreanddance.appstate.edu or call 828-262-3063 or 800-841-ARTS (2787).
This version of the children’s classic tells the whimsical story of a group of peddlers who decide to stop selling their wares to put on a play. After choosing multiple roles to portray from the story, the actors invite the audience to help create the scenes using their imaginations. The Appalachian State University student ensemble engages the audience and takes them on a magical adventure through interactive theatre.
“The Aladdin story is very familiar to most people, particularly with the popularity of the current Broadway musical and beloved Disney film,” explained director Teresa Lee, professor of theatre in the College of Fine and Applied Arts, “but this production goes back to the roots of storytelling by involving the whole audience throughout the performance.”
This year’s AYPT performance company includes theatre majors Krystopher Paschen, Amanda Ufer, Jordan Correll, Tia’rah Kindle, Breanna Glosson and William Butland, with Laura Langston serving as stage manager. The students prepare everything for the production, including the sets and costumes. In mid-March, AYPT began touring “Aladdin” to regional schools and community centers before and after bringing the show to campus. Lee explained, “It is exciting to be able to bring the show back to campus and share it with our own community after they have been performing for school audiences around the region.”
Earlier this month, AYPT received the prestigious Sara Spencer Child Drama Award from the Southeastern Theatre Conference (SETC). This production marks the 46th show since Lee began her AYPT tenure in 1988 and the 35th for which she has served as director.
AYPT has grown into a highly successful outreach program of Appalachian’s Department of Theatre and Dance. Since its inception in 1972, AYPT has reached an estimated 150,000 children with some 65 different productions and continues to serve over 6,500 students a year. AYPT is committed to bringing high quality, low-cost live theatre experiences to young audiences in North Carolina. In recent years, AYPT has been showcased at the Children’s Arts Festival on Roanoke Island and has performed abroad in Scotland.
Tickets for “Aladdin” are available in person weekdays at the Schaefer Center for the Performing Arts box office from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and the Valborg Theatre box office from 1 to 5 p.m. Tickets are also available by phone at 828-262-3063, online at http://theatreanddance.appstate.edu, or at the I.G. Greer Studio Theatre one hour prior to each performance.
I.G. Greer Studio Theatre is located on the east side of I.G. Greer Hall below the main auditorium, with a separate entrance down the stairway on the side of the building. Parking is available after 5:30 p.m. on campus in faculty lots and the College Street parking deck near Belk Library and Information Commons.
About the Department of Theatre and Dance
The Department of Theatre and Dance is housed in the College of Fine and Applied Arts. Its mission is to provide liberal arts educational opportunities along with B.A. degrees in dance studies and theatre arts. The department also values the opportunity to offer coursework for integrated learning through the arts to the general university student population. Vital to the support of this mission is a dynamic co-curricular production program that provides exemplary theatre and dance experiences to departmental students, the university community and the region. The departmental philosophy is to support the university’s liberal arts environment through a balanced and integrated emphasis on teaching, creative activity, scholarship and service. For more information, visit http://theatreanddance.appstate.edu.
About Appalachian State University
Appalachian State University, in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, prepares students to lead purposeful lives as global citizens who understand and engage their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The transformational Appalachian experience promotes a spirit of inclusion that brings people together in inspiring ways to acquire and create knowledge, to grow holistically, to act with passion and determination, and embrace diversity and difference. As one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina system, Appalachian enrolls about 19,000 students, has a low student-to-faculty ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.