Indiana Daily Student

Local theater company brings ‘Matilda The Musical’ to Bloomington this weekend

<p>The cast of &quot;Matilda the Musical&quot; rehearses the song “When I Grow Up” on March 2 in Whikehart Auditorium in the John Waldron Arts Center. Stages Bloomington, a theater company, will perform the musical March 5 to 8 in Whikehart Auditorium.</p>

The cast of "Matilda the Musical" rehearses the song “When I Grow Up” on March 2 in Whikehart Auditorium in the John Waldron Arts Center. Stages Bloomington, a theater company, will perform the musical March 5 to 8 in Whikehart Auditorium.

Local theater company Stages Bloomington will present “Matilda The Musical'' at 7 p.m. Thursday through Saturday with additional shows 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the Ivy Tech John Waldron Arts Center.

The musical, adapted from the children’s book by Roald Dahl, tells the story of a precocious young girl with a vivid imagination and a charismatic personality, who has telekinetic powers. Matilda is neglected by her parents and bullied by the headmistress at her school but forms a bond with her school teacher, Miss Honey.

The 2013 Tony winner was composed by Australian musician Tim Minchin. The book was written by English film and television writer and playwright Dennis Kelly.

The cast of 46 is made up of students ages 10 to 18. Stages Bloomington works to offer year-round, educational theater opportunities to students in the Bloomington community. 

Rory Willats, the director, said this will be his third show with Stages Bloomington. He has been rehearsing with the cast since December and said he is excited to bring the world of Roald Dahl’s children’s book to life. 

“Roald Dahl created a world that is fun, engaging and compelling,” Willats said. “But it touches on the very real and frightening parts of life.”

More than just song and dance, the musical has production elements that audiences don’t see as frequently, such as shadow puppets and stage magic. 

Willats said one of the goals of Stages Bloomington is to allow students to explore different ways to tell stories on stage.

“Stages Bloomington aims to be a pedagogically minded space for the kids in the show,” Willats said. “We want to expose students to as many types of storytelling as possible.”

The show is directed at all audiences, appealing to parents and children alike.

“The way that I’ve been thinking about it is that we’re making a show for people the same age as the cast,” Willats said.

But, all audiences can find something to connect to in the show, Willats said.

“There are parts of the show that parents are going to connect to, and stuff that is going to be especially entertaining for people younger than ten,” Willats said.

Tickets can be purchased for $18-$20 at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater Box Office at 114 E. Kirkwood Ave. or online. If the showings are not sold out, tickets will be available for purchase at the door.

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