Although politics is practiced
by adults, it always has effects on children. Young performers
from the Children's Theatre Company are exploring those realities
now in a production that draws on the writings of sages ranging
from Dr. Seuss to the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Created in honor of United Nations Human
Rights Day (Dec. 10), the show draws on the talents of New Yorkers
ages 4 to 15. Mehr Mansuri and Karida Griffith, the company's
artistic directors, lead the children in a 90-minute show that
includes dance, rap, poetry and music.
The program begins with the youngest thespians
acting out David Kirk's picture book "Miss Spider's Tea Party,"
are quotations from historical figures like King, Harriet
Tubman, Helen Keller and Gandhi - mature words that sound
all the more stirring when uttered by young voices."
children point out, does have a political
point: "learning to accept each other, no matter what background
or bug you are." They also present Dr. Seuss's "Yertle
the Turtle," a pithy statement on the abuses of power.
Performed with hilarious music by Lory
Lazarus, it includes a country-western ode by Mack, the turtle
who is literally at the bottom of society.
The second half of the program, which
is geared to older children, includes a civil rights medley, several
rousing songs by the group's music director, Eric Dozier, and
a dramatization of Langston Hughes's poem "America."
Interspersed throughout are quotations from historical figures
like King, Harriet Tubman, Helen Keller and Gandhi - mature words
that sound all the more stirring when uttered by young voices.
The Children's Theater Company, through
Dec. 30 at the Baha'i Unity Center, 53 East 11th Street,
East Village, (212) 633-6629. Tickets: $12.
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