Children of Eden Jr.
Book by John Caird
Music and Lyrics by Stephen Schwartz
Directed by Joshua Maxwell
Produced by Artisan Children's Theater
Reviewed by Natalie Shaw
Artisan Children's Theater brings us another creative children's production in Children of Eden Jr. Here is another wonderful opportunity to see children bringing the beauty of Theatre to their young peers!
The story takes us on a journey through the beginnings of the Bible, where we meet God (Father, played by Ethan Brown) Adam, Eve (played by Cooper Dabbs and Grace Choate, respectively,) Noah and Noah's Wife (also played by Cooper Dabbs and Grace Choate, respectively) and their children. Author, John Caird makes use of ensembles who play the Snake in the Garden of Eden and a chorus of Storytellers who sing and recite context, much in the same style that original Greek playwrights used in early-recorded History. Had this play been written and performed during Adam and Eve's time, this is likely a style that would've been used, and how thrilling it is to see present day children applying this concept! Actors such as Dabbs, Choate, Natalia Knight, Ethan Riggall and Emma Chandler let their light shine beautifully with sharp vocals and excellent characterization!
Perhaps many of us have sat in Sunday School classes, or even taught them, in which we see children re-enacting familiar stories from the Bible, but Children of Eden Jr. takes this several steps further by including song (music directed by Kathryn O'Neal,) dance (choreographed by Michaela Mae Trebing) and disciplined study of the characters and events being portrayed. These young actors are prepared and well versed in their material-- ready to shed some light on the truth of God's word!
Creativity is also explored through a crafty set (built by Hayden Casey and Raden Phillips, painted by Shelbie Mac) and thoughtful technical design (by Director Joshua Maxwell.) Use of projectors and screens gives us many colorful views of God's creation in an intimate space.
If ever there was a time of mindful reflection of early Bible life, through the re-enactment of our youngsters, it is now! Children of Eden Jr. is one for all children to see! If your little ones are like mine, they'll be asking captivating questions about God and the Bible, intrigued by what they've just seen, all the way home, giving parents teachable moments and lasting memories. Tickets can be found at artisanct.com.
Audience Rating: G
Accessible Seating: Available
Hearing Devices: Not Availble
Sensory Friendly or ASL Showing: Not Available
Sound Level: Comfortable Volume for children and adults
Noises or Visual to Prepare for: Some sounds of thunder and rain