As most youngsters are counting the days until they can open their holiday gifts, the young theater aficionados in the Highland Park Youth Theatre Company are counting the days until they can give a gift to the community – their performance of Disney’s The Little Mermaid Jr. at the Highland Park High School Auditorium on Jan. 15, 2015, 6:30 p.m. The 60-minute musical, designed for pre-teen and teen performers, is based on the 2008 Broadway production and the 1989 animated feature film.
The Highland Park Youth Theatre Company cast contains approximately 40 students aged eight to 15 years old, led by professional director, Tova Halpern, founder and artistic director of Fresh Theatre Arts, LLC, with music direction by Avi Wolf.
This classic Disney title contains all of the songs from the Academy Award® winning animated feature film as well as three new songs from the Broadway show. The Little Mermaid Jr. takes place in a magical kingdom beneath the sea, where a beautiful young mermaid named Ariel longs to leave her ocean home to live in the world above. But first, she’ll have to defy her father, the king of the sea, escape the clutches of an evil sea witch and convince a prince that she’s the girl with the perfect voice.
The Highland Park Youth Theatre Company (HPYTC), operating under the auspices of the Highland Park Recreation, is open to the town’s youth ages eight through 16 years old. Anyone can join the program -no theater experience is necessary. HPYTC produces three musicals a year, one of which is performed at the community’s July 4th celebration. This program introduces children to the world of theater through improvisation, games, acting, singing and dancing. Each session culminates in a full-scale production, directed by Ms. Halpern and Mr. Wolf.
For those interested in becoming part of HPYTC, contact Highland Park Recreation at 732-819-0411. And for those who would rather just sit back and enjoy the performance of The Little Mermaid Jr., just show up on Thursday, Jan. 15, 6:30 p.m., at the Highland Park High School auditorium, free admission, but suggested individual donation is $2. Residents should mark their calendars and give themselves a post-holiday season treat.