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PR #28 September 10, 2007


The Theatre at Raritan Valley Community College?s (RVCC) 2007-2008 Sampler Series will offer local children the opportunity to see live theatre right in their own neighborhood. This year?s series, recommended for youngsters age four and older and their families, offers a variety of performances?from a theatrical staging of the children?s classic, Charlotte?s Web ; to a puppet play of Snow White ; to the award-winning juggling of the Gizmo Guys.

All Sampler Series performances will be presented at 1 and 3:30 p.m. Tickets cost $10 each. The following shows will be offered:

Junie B. Jones (TheatreworksUSA), Sunday, October 7

Junie B. Jones is finally graduating from kindergarten and is ready for first grade. But getting used to a new group of friends, a new teacher and new glasses is challenging?even for irrepressible Junie B. Follow her adventures as she writes everything down in her ?top-secret personal beeswax? journal. The new musical is based on four volumes in Barbara Park?s Junie B. Jones series of books.

Tom Chapin & Friends , Sunday, December 9

Tom Chapin has gained widespread critical and popular acclaim for his recordings aimed at 4 to 11 year olds and their families. Chapin and his collaborators, John Forster, Michael Mark and Jon Cobert, have created songs that quickly have become children?s classics. His family albums have been recognized with awards from the American Library Association, Parents' Choice , the New York Music Awards, the National Association of Parenting Publications and Parents magazine. Five of his family recordings have received Grammy nominations for Best Musical Album For Children.

Winnie the Pooh (TheatreworksUSA), Sunday, January 13

It?s a very busy day for Pooh in the Hundred Acre Wood. He has to complete his stoutness exercises, catch a Heffalump with Piglet and also search for Eeyore?s missing tail. Meanwhile, Rabbit needs Pooh?s assistance in an elaborate plan to trick Kanga and Baby Roo, and Owl dispenses some bird-brained advice. All the while, everyone?s favorite bear is hungrily searching for honey. Generations have grown up with A.A. Milne?s stories about Christopher Robin and his toy animals. Now, all the heart, wisdom and fun of the classic tales come to life as musical theatre.

Snow White (Matthias Kuchta), Sunday, February 10

This beautiful puppet play, performed by Matthias Kuchta ( Hansel & Gretel , 2005), follows the brothers Grimm version of the story, bringing to life the evil queen, the lovable dwarves, the compassionate hunter, the handsome prince and, of course, the dangerously beautiful Snow White. The nearly life-sized puppets play on the floor in front of, and sometimes between, the children. The event is offered in the Theatre?s onstage setting, so seating is limited and early ticket purchases are recommended.

Peter & the Wolf/Beauty & the Beast (New Jersey Ballet Company), Sunday, March 2

Introduce young ones to the beauty of ballet with this delightful double bill that features wonderful dancing, colorful costumes and splendid music. In Peter & the Wolf, brave Peter saves his animal friends from the wolf. Based on a Russian folktale, the ballet features the familiar Prokofiev score. In the well-known Beauty & the Beast, goodness and love break a magic spell and turn an enchanted Beast back into a handsome prince. The production is set to the music of Ravel. Both performances include live narration, so even the youngest children can follow the story.

Charlotte's Web (TheatreworksUSA), Sunday, April 6

TheatreworksUSA?s production of Charlotte's Web is based on E.B. White?s loving story of the friendship between a pig named Wilbur and a little gray spider named Charlotte. Wilbur has a problem: how to avoid becoming pork chops. Charlotte, a fine writer and true friend, devises a plan to fool Farmer Zuckerman?she will create a ?miracle.? Spinning the words ?Some Pig? in her web, Charlotte weaves a solution that not only makes Wilbur a prize pig, but also ensures his place on the farm forever. The treasured tale, featuring mad-cap and endearing farm animals, explores bravery, selfless love and the true meaning of friendship.

Dr. Dolittle (TheatreworksUSA), Sunday, April 27

Hugh Lofting, a lieutenant in the Royal British Army, is separated from his son Colin during World War I. At his wife?s urging, Lofting writes a story for him from the front, a marvelous tale about a kind-hearted physician who can talk with the animals, titled The Story of Doctor Dolittl e. Doctor Dolittle lives with his animal friends in the little English town of Puddleby-on-Marsh. One day an African monkey seeks out the world-famous good doctor. When Doctor Dolittle learns that a mysterious disease is afflicting the monkeys of Africa, he sets off on a musical adventure to come to the animals? aid.

Gizmo Guys , Sunday, May 4

Allan Jacobs and Barrett Felker have amazed and amused audiences around the world in places as diverse as Saudi Arabia and Japan. The performers have made numerous television appearances, won international juggling competitions and taught at top circus schools. But what makes them so entertaining is how they combine original routines, quick-witted verbal repartee and world-class juggling skills in a very light-hearted approach to the art.

For the fourth year in a row, Courier News readers voted The Theatre at RVCC as the ?Best of the Best? in 2007 in the ?Playhouse/Theater? category.

In addition to the Sampler Series , the Theatre will present this season the Major Artists Series ; the 16th annual Merck Series , made possible by a generous grant from The Merck Company Foundation; School-Time Performances , a series for teachers and their students; and Family Series , for families with children ages eight and older.

A variety of subscribers? packages are available for all Theatre series. To purchase tickets or for more information, call the Box Office, 908-725-3420, or order online at www.rvccArts.org . Senior citizen, student and group discounts are also available for a variety of performances.

The Theatre offers birthday parties for both the Family and Sampler Series . For further information, call 908-725-3420.

RVCC, located on Route 28 and Lamington Road in North Branch, NJ, and serving Somerset and Hunterdon County residents for close to 40 years, offers more than 80 associate degrees and certificates. In addition, customized training programs and non-credit courses are available for those seeking personal and professional development.

The College is committed to offering a quality and affordable education through effective teaching, liaisons with the community?s businesses and state-of-the-art technology. For further information, visit www.raritanval.edu .

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