“I love tickets!” squeals Cameron Diaz’s character in the first Charlie’s Angels movie. (And why has no one ever made a gif of that?) It’s supposed to illustrate what an eccentric character she is, but I understand completely. I love tickets. And spring is ticket season. Season-ticket season, to be precise. All of the arts organizations announce their upcoming seasons, tickets go on sale, and I spend hours each spring planning what I will be doing on Saturday nights all next winter. I’ve already written about next season’s offerings at Seattle Opera and Pacific Northwest Ballet. Now let’s talk about Seattle’s best theater.
I know, I never thought about Seattle Children’s Theatre before, either. Certainly not for season tickets. If I noticed it at all I probably thought, “Oh cute, a theater just for little kids!” or “Wow, Seattle is so theater crazy we even have one just for kids.” But once I started covering arts for a parenting magazine, I started watching a lot of theater produced by a lot of different companies. My seven-year-old has probably seen more theater than I had when I was thirty. And not just kids’ stuff. I mean, I haven’t dragged my kids to see any David Mamet, but we’ve been all over the county checking out productions. And two of the best shows (here and here) I’ve seen since I started reviewing theater (maybe ever?) were at Seattle Children’s. Don’t let the name fool you. This is a quality regional theater with professionalism in every aspect of its productions.
Whether you have kids or not, if you have any interest in theater, you need to be looking at Seattle Children’s season when you are ready to buy tickets. So let’s look at the season, shall we?
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
October 13–December 11, 2016
It’s scary when someone makes a new adaptation of something so close to your heart. But I am so trepidatiously there.
December 1, 2016–January 8, 2017
Now I know what you’re thinking. And I don’t have an answer. I have no idea how to turn a picture book about a bat into a satisfying theater experience. But I have faith, because I’ve seen them pull off canine art thieves. (I didn’t write the review of that one – I chaperoned my daughter’s field trip.)
The Snowy Day and other stories by Ezra Jack Keats
January 19–February 26, 2017
Ezra Jack Keats stories? His stories are so quiet and lovely and natural and true – how could it NOT be great?
Into the West
February 23–March 19, 2017 This is my kryptonite. I am absolutely defenseless against stories about children experiencing Irish mythology. And since it’s by the same playwright who brought us SCT’s Robin Hood, I bet you will be, too.
March 23–April 16, 2017
Oh my god. Real-life magic beans. You know I got my masters degree in urban horticulture, right? And that I was a community gardener in Seattle’s P-Patch program for years before I got a house? This play is all the good things.
Fire Station 7
April 13–May 21, 2017
Oh sweet. A cat wants to be a firefighter in a musical comedy that also teaches kids fire safety. It’s exactly what you expect from a children’s theater, and if you don’t have kids I won’t hold it against you if you skip this one. But then again, they did pull off canine art thieves, so this will probably be the best firefighting feline play you ever didn’t see.