The Amazing Adventures of Harvey and the Princess

Adventures in Stage Management!

This past May, NYC Children’s Theater awarded me another glorious opportunity: stage managing the workshop of The Amazing Adventures of Harvey and the Princess! I had never staged managed a performance before and found myself excited (albeit nervous) to tackle a new and thrilling challenge.

My adventures began acting as a liaison between the members of the creative team and the cast – answering questions, making contact sheets and schedules, assuring that every actor had the proper materials, creating binders with scripts and sheet music for each actor and even making boat and mountain props to be used during the reading (although my far more talented uncle ended up doing the hard part!).

Sitting in on a meeting with the creative team; Laurie Berkner (music & lyrics), Barbara Zinn Krieger (book and Artistic Director of NYC Children’s Theater), Marty Johnson (director), Kristen Rosenfeld (music director), and Emma Halpern (Co-Artistic Director of NYC Children’s Theater) I began to realize how lucky I was to be given this opportunity.

That feeling only intensified during the rehearsal for the workshop when I got to sit in an empty theater with our brilliant creative team and watch four extremely talented performers bring Laurie and Barbara’s creation to life!

The day of the reading is a blur – it flew by so quickly and there was so much to do to prepare for the guests who would be coming to see the performance. Seeing how far the show had come in less than two days due to Marty, Laurie, Barbara and Kristen’s instincts and the incredibly hard work of the cast, was staggering and inspiring.Then as the guests took their seats and the reading began it became clear thatThe Amazing Adventures of Harvey and the Princess was something special and I am fortunate to have played such a small role in its journey.

– Nicole

Alices Story NYCCT Anti-Bullying Program

NYCCT Education Director Brooke Boertzel Talks Bullying

As the Director of Education at New York City Children’s Theater, I have the task of creating age-appropriate curricula for both elementary and middle school students. In creating these programs, I’ve had to pay close attention to the developmental difference between the ages of these children so that I could address relevant and interesting topics that appealed to these specific ages, and respect (yet challenge) the inhibiting social/personal barriers that develop and strengthen with age. Read more

Wanda's Monster

Audience Member Expectations

With Wanda’s Monster opening this Friday, I’ve got audiences on my mind. What is a good audience member? Is it only someone who is willing to pay the ticket price? Or is it more than that—is it someone who laughs and responds and listens at all the right moments the creative team wants them to?

(It’s a lovely, lovely pipedream to think that we can control our audiences.)

For the last few shows I’ve been a part of at NYC Children’s Theater, we’ve had pretty diverse audiences, from little ones to grandparents. In general, they’ve all been engaged, responsive audiences, leaving us very little to complain about.

Wanda’s Monster, unlike The Butterfly or Louis Armstrong: Jazz Ambassador, is aimed at a very young audience, 4 to 8 year olds (Even though I know we will have some babes in arms). The expectation from our audience is completely different. We’ll be doing well if the little tykes dance and bounce and clap in the aisles.

What kind of expectations do you have of your audiences, if any? Do you think it’s best to prepare your audiences, or do you just roll the dice and let them respond and behave naturally?

Wanda’s Monster tells the story of Wanda, a spunky 5 year old with a vivid imagination, is convinced there’s a monster in her closet. Granny agrees, and contrary to Wanda’s expectations, convinces Wanda that “Monster” is in her closet because he is shy and friendless, not because he’s scary. With Granny’s encouragement, Wanda befriends “Monster,” turning a potentially fearful situation into a lesson in acceptance and friendship.

Filled with catchy new songs from children’s music star Laurie Berkner and featuring “Monster Boogie,” one of her all time hits, Wanda’s Monster will delight 4-8 year olds and their parents too!

NOTE: Laurie Berkner will NOT be performing in Wanda’s Monster, but we hope you enjoy her new songs!