'Sound bites' on Live Oak's "The Little Mermaid"

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'Sound bites' on Live Oak's "The Little Mermaid"

Mon, 10/28/2019 - 12:02
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Get the backstage scoop on Live Oak's latest production: "The Little Mermaid" from Director Kyle Marra, Music and Artistic Director Randi Olsen and Directing/Acting Coach Vince Vanni

From Randi Olsen, Little Mermaid Music Director and LOT Artistic Director:

I’ve been in love with the characters, the melodies & the incredible orchestrations of The Little Mermaid since the original film came out when I was a teenager.  It was one of the first films I saw that really married the modern American musical theater genre to the screen and I’ve been obsessed with it ever since!  

The chance to bring some of my favorite childhood characters like Ariel and Sebastian and Ursula to the stage is a dream come true.  Now that we’ve settled into our building, our creative team was ready for another Wizard if Oz or Narnia like challenge and The Little Mermaid was perfect!  
Virtually every aspect of this show presents a creative challenge in one form or fashion.  The actors are sea creatures for a good amount of time and both the costumes & their  movements need to reflect that.  The sets must switch back and forth between land and sea seamlessly in order for the scenes to progress smoothly.  The only way to tackle these challenges effectively and efficiently is through creative collaboration which happens to be one of our specialties here at Live Oak Theatre.  

The Little Mermaid has been a collaborative effort on all levels of production.   In fact, the best part about putting this show together has been seeing young leaders rise up within the cast. So many of the teens and young adults in our cast have learned to look at a show from more than just an actors point of view.    Many of the Live Oak kids who have grown up in our company to be Live Oak teenagers and young adults.  Over the years, we’ve trained them to think like directors and choreographers, and this show has provided an opportunity for them to step into some of those roles. For example, some have joined the choreography team or have been entrusted to block certain scenes.  Some of them are creating costumes and working with lighting and sound. It has been rewarding to see their talents bloom. 

Another obvious challenge of producing a show like The Little Mermaid is adapting such a huge show to our intimate space.  We’re excited to announce that we’ve met this challenge by significantly changing our seating format and extending our stage to the floor of our theatre. This creates a theatre in the round like setting similar to what the producers on Once on This Island did on Broadway.

We think our audience will be delighted with the new seating arrangement which gives them better sight lines and  will allow them to become fully immersed in their theatre experience! 

Audiences should expect an immersive experience as they dive down to Ariel's magical underwater world. They will get to be up close and personal with her, her colorful friends, and her crafty enemy. It's a show that families won't want to miss.

From Kyle Marra, Director:

Putting Mermaid together comes with a variety of challenges, I wouldn't say there is a greatest challenge. We have a new seating design that our cast must adapt to, we have a slightly condensed turnaround time from start of rehearsals to the first show date, and there are quite a few pivotal numbers in the show. However, we have an amazing team, and by dividing and conquering we have been surging forward.

The best part about putting this show together has been seeing young leaders rise up within the cast. So many of the teens and young adults in our cast have learned to look at a show from more than just an actor’s point of view. They think like directors and choreographers, and this show has provided an opportunity for them to step into some of those roles. For example, some have joined the choreography team, others have been entrusted to block certain scenes. It has been rewarding to see their talents bloom.

Audiences should expect an immersive experience as they dive down to Ariel's magical underwater world. They will get to be up close and personal with her, her colorful friends, and her crafty enemy. It's a show that families won't want to miss.

From Vince Vanni, 
Directing/Acting Coach and Marketing Director:

What has really jumped up at me in this production, is the leadership that is developing among our company members. As we continued to grow, leaders are emerging as choreographers, assistant directors and directors, and chorus directors. Watching the young people guiding others is really gratifying. You must see their leadership and creativity at work.

Show Details:

The Little Mermaid will be performed at the Morsani Center for the Arts, 21030 Cortez Boulevard, Brooksville, Florida over three weekends on November 8, 9, 10, 15, 16, 17, 22, 23 and 24, 2019.   Shows are 7:30 pm on Fridays and Saturdays with 2:30 pm matinees on Saturdays and Sundays. Tickets are $20, or $5 for children 13 and younger, when purchased with an adult ticket. Admission includes coffee, tea, and dessert, available during intermission. 

For more information and to reserve seating call 352-593-0027 or email LiveOakBoxO[email protected] or purchase online at https://mkt.com/liveoaktheatre

Follow Live Oak Theatre on Facebook at www.facebook.com/LiveOakTheatre.

About The Little Mermaid

The Little Mermaid is a stage musical produced by Disney Theatrical, based on the animated 1989 Disney film of the same name and the classic story of the same name by Hans Christian Andersen about a mermaid who dreams of the world above the sea and gives up her voice to find love. Its

book is by Doug Wright, music by Alan Menken and lyrics by Howard Ashman (written for the film), with additional lyrics by Glenn Slater.
The musical began Broadway previews on November 3, 2007 at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre. the production officially opened on January 10, 2008 and closed on August 30, 2009 after 685 performances and 50 previews. 

After the Broadway production closed, changes were made to the score and book, including introducing a new song, "Daddy's Little Angel.” The various changes in these productions have been incorporated into the official version of the show that Disney Theatrical currently licenses for regional and professional productions. 

Live Oak Theatre’s The Little Mermaid will be performed in a “Thrust” setting, in LOT’s newly reconfigured theatre, where there is not a bad seat in the house.
 

 

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