The Lambton Young Theatre Players are returning to the stage after a two-year pause for the pandemic with a new play – A Topsy Turvy Fairly Tale.
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It opens with performances at Christ Church in Petrolia on Friday at 7 p.m. and Saturday at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.
The show moves to the Oil Springs Youth Centre Sunday at 2 p.m. and the Plympton-Wyoming Agricultural Hall May 21 at 2 p.m.
The youth theatre group was founded more than a decade ago by Nancy Keys – a playwright, director and actor with three decades of experience in theatre.
A Topsy Turvy Fairly Tale is a “collective creation” written by the young actors and Keys.
“Our cast members have very vivid imaginations,” she said. “It has been a lot of fun putting this story together in all its weird and wonderfulness.”
They began with classic fairy tale characters and then created a new story that includes a fairy godmother, an uprising by the other characters and even a rap in German by Hansel and Gretel.
“We came up with a script that is very, very entertaining and quite funny,” Keys said.
There are 15 young people on stage and two more helping as stage managers. Work on the production began in January.
There were still pandemic restrictions in place when work on the show began so, instead of a theatre, the decision was made to stage it for smaller audiences at community halls around Lambton County.
“We’re doing this in-the-round, so to speak, but more like in-the-U,” Keys said about how the travelling productions will be set up in the halls.
Audiences at the shows in Petrolia are limited to about 60 seats each.
Tickets are $15 for adults and $20 for youths. They will be available at the door or by calling 226-932-7262.
Keys said the group’s summer drama camps will return this year. Information will be posted in the coming days at www.lambtonyoungplayers.com.
“And then we will be auditioning again in September for a main stage production of our fall play, which will be Robin Hood and the Queen,” she said.
“I spent the COVID crackdown writing it.”
The group’s main stage shows are for ages nine to 18. The camps are for ages seven to 12.
“The kids are so excited,” Keys said about the return to staging shows. “They’re so delighted.”