A sense of wonder was in the air at the recent Ross School Children’s Community Theater performances of Over the River and Into the Woods. The original play, written and directed by Performing Arts teacher Margaret Kestler*, follows adolescent boys Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer through encounters with fairy tale heroines and princesses.
The play opens with Tom falling head over heels for Becky Thatcher, which prompts Huck to warn his friend that no good can come from love and marriage. As examples, he points to the fabled tales of charming princes and their valiant deeds performed in pursuit of their lady loves—though in his humorous versions, the tales end slightly short of happily ever after.
The scenes draw the audience “into the woods” to the magical worlds of Sleeping Beauty, Rapunzel, The Frog Prince, Pocahontas, and Beauty and the Beast, and the acting, scenery, and music were, in one word, “fabulous.” As the rousing applause subsided after the final act, the smiling crowd discussed the endearing tale of coming of age, with many recalling their own fond memories of adolescence and first brushes with love.
Bravo to the cast and crew!
*Special thanks go to the play’s music director Loreen Enright, Ann and Bill Stewart for the beautiful set design, Laura Eisman and Sally Wang for costume design, and Tathiana Teixiera for choreography.