Charlie Misovye, director of The Drama Group Children's Theatre production this month in Chicago Heights presenation of "The Adventures of Pinocchio," is quick to emphasize this story is more than "just a fairy tale."
"There are a few themes that unfold on stage, ranging from acceptance and honesty to the true meaning of friendship," said Misovye, who has been working with his cast of children and adults fine tuning final details before the show run March 20-24 at The Drama Group Studio Theatre, 330 West 202nd St. in Chicago Heights, Ill.
"The Drama Group Children's Theatre produces two great one-hour-attention-span-friendly children's shows each season, in November and then our March offering. Our productions are great for schools, daycare centers, scout troops and families. A favorite part is we hold a meet and greet with the characters after each show."
In addition to young actor Noah Uhlenbrauck of Crete, Ill. playing the title character, veteran actor Rick Rapp of Chicago is playing the humble woodcarver named Geppetto who longs for a son.
"Rick has appeared as Mr. Brownlow in 'Oliver!' and up next, will appear as Buffalo Bill in 'Annie Get Your Gun' for Light Opera Works," Misoyve said.
"What makes our production of 'Pinocchio' so special is the family classic comes to life in our version as an original musical adaptation. And the lesson of good deeds and unconditional love are highlighted for audiences of all ages."
In addition to the two children's show each year, he said the The Drama Group Theatre Company also presents five main stage shows each year and also hosts a very popular children's theater camp."
"This theater company has a long 20-year and plus history, but we still have new people finding us every year," Misoyve said.
"For our children's productions, we have about 10 rehearsals, amounting to around 12 hours. But what I tell our young cast members is the most important part is the homework and learning lines before getting to rehearsal."