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Published: Thursday, 1/31/2008

Shows for young will generate laughs, discussion

BY NANCIANN CHERRY
BLADE STAFF WRITER
A Scene from "The Many Adventures of Snow White" at Owens Community College Family  Fun Sundays.   A Scene from "The Many Adventures of Snow White" at Owens Community College Family Fun Sundays.
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Theater enthusiasts both young and young at heart have several productions from which to choose in the Toledo area this week.

Owens Community College offers The Many Adventures of Snow White on Sunday. The Theatre Company on Tour, a professional troupe based near Los Angeles, presents Barbara Hinrichsen's musical adaptation of the classic tale at 2 and 4 p.m. in the Mainstage Theatre of the Center for Fine and Performing Arts.

The show, according to Barbara Barkan, the center's operating manager, features audience participation, colorful sets and costumes, and good-humored fun as it tells the tale of a ditzy Snow White who can't stop singing; the Evil Queen who hates music; the local prince who is a rock star; and seven wise-cracking dwarfs who never seem to all show up at the same time.

"It's kind of a two-level show," Hinrichsen, who is also the director, said in a telephone interview yesterday. "The kids get it on one level, and the adults get it on another."

She also emphasized that her adaptation is viewer-friendly. "I have kids, and I was very careful not to have it too scary because I didn't want parents to worry."

The Many Adventures of Snow White is the third in Owens' Family Fun Sunday series.

The fourth and final production of the season will be James and the Giant Peach, presented by Cleveland Sign Stage, on March 30.

"The Many Adventures of Snow White" is scheduled at 2 and 4 p.m. in Owens Community College's Center for Fine and Performing Arts, 30335 Oregon Rd., Perrysburg. Tickets are $10. Information: 567-661-2787.

Siena Heights University takes a fresh look at old standards with Flip-Flop Folk Tales.

Director Kerry Graves, associate professor of theater and speech communication at Siena, said she adapted Cinderella and The Frog Prince for her production, changing them to teach lessons about peer pressure, bullying, and other challenges that students may face.

Graves, the director of Creative Stages, an after-school theater program for students in kindergarten through grade 12, said more than 70 youngsters will perform in Flip-Flop Folk Tales, and about 60 of them have lines.

Key characters are three high school students, a mysterious librarian, and six actors who portray subconscious thoughts, three good, three bad.

The subconscious characters flit through the entire play, tempting the students as well as helping them to make good decisions.

Siena Heights University presents "Flip-Flop Folk Tales" at 7 p.m. tomorrow and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday in the Francoeur Theater of the Performing Arts Center on the campus in Adrian. Tickets are $7 for adults and $5 for seniors, children, and Siena employees and students. Information: 517-264-7840.

After a long holiday break, Lourdes College resumes its Theater Vision program Wednesday with Freedom Bound.

The production by Mad River Theater Works, a professional troupe based in West Liberty, Ohio, uses traditional folk songs and original tunes, accompanied by live instrumental music, to enhance the fact-based drama about Addison White, a runaway slave, who takes refuge in Mechanicsburg, Ohio, in the 1850s. When the slave-hunters come calling, the town's residents join together to protect him.

The drama, aimed at students in grades 5-12, is designed to provoke discussion on the meaning of freedom. The Theater Vision program is geared to school field trips, but the public can attend if there is space available.

"Freedom Bound" is scheduled at 10 a.m. and 12:15 p.m. Wednesday and Feb. 7 in the auditorium of the Franciscan Theatre & Conference Center of Lourdes College, 6832 Convent Blvd., Sylvania. Tickets are $7. Information: 419-824-3986.

Contact Nanciann Cherry at: ncherry@theblade.com

or 419-724-6130.



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