The Smith Opera House's ArtSmart Theatre for Young People Series commences this month with Omaha Theater Company for Young People's live production of “Miss Nelson is Missing” on Monday, Nov. 1.
Based on “Miss Nelson is Missing” and “Miss Nelson is Back,” two titles in a popular series written by Harry Allard and illustrated by James Marshall, the musical uses various musical styles–rock 'n' roll, waltz, march and ragtime–to enhance the humor and mystery surrounding Miss Nelson's disappearance. It was the winner of the National Children's Theater Festival award for best musical.
When Miss Nelson fails to show up, her unruly pupils take satisfaction in the belief that they've driven her away. Their joy turns to dread, though, when Miss Viola Swamp, a mean and mysterious substitute teacher, arrives in the classroom. Under Swamp's harsh classroom style, the students are overwhelmed with homework and lose their story time.
It doesn't take long for the children to realize how much they long for Miss Nelson, but their attempt to get help from the police department's Detective McSmogg proves unsuccessful. It's then that the students realize it was their disruptive behavior that drove their teacher away, and they set out to make things right.
Joan Cushing, who adapted “Miss Nelson is Missing” for the stage, is best known for her musical revue, “Mrs. Foggybottom & Friends,” which had extended runs in New York City. Her musical “Flush!” earned the H. D. Lewis Award for Playwright Development at the Source Theater Festival.
Show times for “Miss Nelson” are 10 a.m. and noon. All seats are $4.50 and may be reserved by contacting the Smith Opera House. The production lasts one hour. Home schoolers and public and parochial school students are invited to attend this unique and exciting staged experience. Suggested for ages four and up.
The Smith Opera House is located at 82 Seneca Street in Geneva. Call 315-781-LIVE or toll-free 1-866-355 LIVE for additional information. The Smith is supported, in part, with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts, the City of Geneva, the Town of Geneva and by contributions from individual supporters. This production is generously sponsored by the Lyons National Bank.
Other shows in the 2004/04 ArtSmart Theatre for Young People Series include “Guess How Much I Love You” (January 20), “Color Me Dark: A Story of the Great Migration North” (January 28), “Mayhem Poets: Whatchuwant” (March 18), “The Shape of a Girl” (April 1) and “Mammoth Follies” (April 13). Contact The Smith to reserves space at any of these productions.