|Bumbershoot Children's Theatre artistic director Tracy Ross reads from the story book of Molly Shannon's Tilly the Trickster. Live readings are a part of the theatre's community night before to each show, moving us from page to stage.|
The first example will be a community night for Red Riding Hood on Jan. 10, which will be partnered with the RCMP and will illustrate the topic of Stranger Danger.
The 45-minute community night programs will begin at 6 p.m. with Bumbershoot artistic director Tracy Ross reading the story of the play to a family audience.
In the case of Red Riding Hood, RCMP representatives will then relate the story to real life experiences with strangers and how children should handle them.
Each coming production will feature a community night event partnered with different local organizations to connect families to theatre and bring story telling to another level.
Additional community night partnerships for the season will include Kelowna Community Resources for Tilly the Trickster on March 7, The Kelowna Museum for The Book of Ruth on April 11, Mission Greenway Educational Centre for A Year with Frog and Toad on May 9, The Kelowna Food Bank for Hansel and Gretel on Oct. 17 and The Gospel Mission for Elves and the Shoemaker on Dec. 19.
"The community partnerships are designed to bring the themes of the classic and new stories into a new perspective, and create an opportunity for children to learn and create dialogue from them within their families," Ross said.
All of the community nights will take place at Bumbershoot Children's Theatre at #125-1295 Cannery Lane in Kelowna. Details can be found on the Bumbershoot website, bumbershootthreatre com.
The community partnerships will be complemented by a new passport program this season will offer children special pre- and post-show activities they can bring to each production, inspired by the 2014 Bumbershoot theme: "Oh, the places you'll goâ€¦"
Subscriptions for the 2014 season are now available.
Bumbershoot, which was launched in 2009, is a non-profit registered charitable theatre company dedicated to introducing Okanagan youth and children to the magic of the theatre.
"All of these experiences offer excellent opportunities for young people to explore the fun in theatre and to make new friends and great memories," Ross said.
In addition to its live theatre performances, the children's theatre company also offers a full selection of drama workshops and classes. Another activity is its residency program, which is done in conjunction with participating Okanagan schools. The program offers a week-long in-school program which immerses students in a drama workshop as part of the school's curriculum.
After gaining first-hand drama knowledge and experience, the students host a performance for parents with the proceeds going to the school.