BAC play about fairytale forensics
Special to the Nevada Appeal
An upcoming play at the Brewery Arts Center blends hard-boiled crime fiction with classic fairy tales, all performed by a cast of children and young teens.
“CSI Neverland,” staged by the youth troupe BAC Stage Kids, enlists more than 30 kids to tell the story of Fairy Forensic Officers Lt. Murk and Lt. Tinker as they investigate the murder of Peter Pantaloon’s shadow.
“I like this show because it is funny for adults as well as kids,” said director Jim Godwin, a professional screen actor. “It allows the kids to be silly and silliness is a state of grace.”
The plot takes aim at conventions from many genres, from “Peter Pan’s” crocodile to a team of literal Lab Rats in the crime lab, artistic director Andie Anderson said.
“It references a lot of topics that different people will get,” she said. “You have the fairy tales, but there’s also a ‘Fight Club’ reference and jokes about modern celebrities like Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. (At its heart,) it really is a spoof of crime dramas. It lets the kids play with a gritty crime story, but in a fun way.”
The play will run for eight shows ” a tall order for some of the younger cast members ” so some key roles will feature different performers on different days, Anderson said. BAC Stage Kids performers generally range in age from 10 to 16, but “Neverland” will include a “feature performance” by one especially talented four-year-old, she said.
“We’ve been rehearsing since the end of March,” she said. “We’re even doing a performance for the summer school kids at Carson Middle School. It’s been a huge effort, and all the kids are really excited. They’ve all done such a great job.”
After several years in existence, the BAC Stage Kids program has developed into a formal year-round theater program that attempts to compensate for dwindling arts funding in public schools, according to the troupe’s Web site. Children are taught the basics, then, as their skills progress, more advanced techniques of theater, music, movement and technical theatre in a more organized, formal setting. The ultimate goals of the program include preparing kids for high school-level drama classes, or just encouraging an interest in the arts.