12:30 p.m ., Dec. 11)
Christmas production a magical gift for all ages
By Fred Sherwin
and Gerda play with their grandmother durng the opening scene of 'The Snow Queen
and Friends' put on by the Orléans Young Players' Christmas Class on Saturday.
it to the talented and imaginative folks at Orléans Young Players to take a classic
fairy tale and adapt it into something wonderful for audiences of all ages to
Snow Queen and Friends" is an adaptation of the classic Hans Christian Andersen
fairy tale 'The Snow Queen" in which a young girl named Gerda searches for
her friend Kai whose been taken north by the Snow Queen.
and Kai are life long friends before a shard of from an enchanted mirror pierces
his eye and heart, turning him into a nasty, mean-spirited boy. One day while
out sledding, he attaches his toboggan to the back of beautiful sleigh. Unbeknownst
to Kai, the sleigh is driven by the Snow Queen who takes him to her ice palace
where he slowly forgets about his former life and his friend Gerda.
Kai doesn't return home, Gerda sets to search for him travelling first down a
long river that takes her two flower women who are actually nice witches, but
they are lonely and want a child of their own so they give her a potion to forget
she sees a Kai's favourite flower, a rose, she remembers her friend and renews
her search. Before long she's accosted by a gang of robbers and befriended by
a robber girl who lends her a reindeer that takes her to see a wise wizard. The
wizard tells Gerda that Kai has been bewitched and only her love can break the
the reindeer carries her to the palace, Kai's spell is broken and the Snow Queen's
icy heart is metled by Gerta's tears. Gerta and Kai then return home but not before
dropping an orphan girl from the ice palace off at the flower women's home.
Snow Queen and Friends" was produced by OYP's Christmas Class which includes
both youngsters and adults and is directed by OYP's artistic director Kathi Langston.
play strays from the original fairy tale in that the crow that guides Gerda is
actually a dove and the wise wizard is a gardener disguised as a lonesome pine.
Snow Queen, played by Barbara Bucknell, is consoled by the goblin, played Henri
Feist, as her cold heart begins to melt during a scene in OYP's production of
'The Snow Queen and Friends'. Fred Sherwin/Photo
wizard is a clever adaptation. As he sends Gerda and the reindeer off to the Snow
Queen's palace he shouts, "And to all a good night". Later on in the
play the robber girl tells Gerda that she's given up her former life to live with
the wise wizard who "makes toys for all the boys and girls".
play was filled with amazing performances as the entire cast did a wonderful job.
A few of my personal favouties were Allie Davidson as Gerda, Henri Feist as the
goblin and Kim Tunney and Tina Chan as the flower women, especially when they
sing the alphabet song.
rest of the cast included: Barbara Bucknell as the Snoiw Queen; Emma Dolhai as
Kai; Pierre Larocque as the wizard and the crow; Sheila Watts as the grandmother;
Jessica Barlow as the robber girl; and Phlox Todd as the orphan girl Petal.
final production of the holiday season takes place later this week when the East
End Theatre company presents their annual traditional pantomime. This year they'll
be performing the pantomime version of "Mother Goose".
performances will be held on Thursday, Friday and Saturday night at 7:30 p.m.
at the Orleans Theatre. Two special matinee performances will also be held on
Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m. Admission is $15 for adults and $5 for children.
For more information visit www.eastendtheatre.com.
story was made possible thanks to the generous support of our local
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