Which Broadway jr.?

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March 21, 2011
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I am the music teacher in a k-8 school. We recently started a drama club made up of approximately 40 5-8th graders. We had huge succress with our show this year and would like to step up and do a Broadway Jr. show for next year. I'm wondering if anyone could make a suggestion as to which one to start with. We have some strong singers and actresses/actors. Several of our members have experience with summer theater, etc. Any suggestions would be appreciated. We're looking to WOW our audience and give our kids a great experience!!! Thanks! One other thing - Annie jr. was just performed in our area so that one is out.
7 answers

March 30, 2011
Bonnie, I've done Annie, Aladdin, Guys & Dolls, Music Man, Once on This Island, and Seussical--all in Jr. versions. We just finished Seussical two weeks ago, and I completely agree with Sean that it is a great choice. It was by far one of the best shows I've done. We had a cast of 33 6th-8th graders. The characters are great for showing off a lot of talent, and we incorporated a TON of dancing into our show. Once on This Island was one of my kids' favorites. Even though it's not a "big name" show like the Disney shows are, it has great music and a nice storyline. Really, it doesn't matter what Jr show you choose, the Showkits are designed to make it easy to put the shows on with this age group. You're practically guaranteed a great show not matter what show it is! Jonathan--Have you signed up for Fast-Track Notificaiton of Winnie the Pooh KIDS and The Little Mermaid JR? They're not out yet, but I've heard they should be out soon!

March 28, 2011
You can't go wrong with School House Rock Live! Jr. It is super easy from the director side of things, and allows for a huge cast. The audiences love it, the kids have fun. I really like it because it has several opportunities for solos, and a huge ensemble...so you can highlight some of you kids with more experience while still giving those that are new to it an opportunity to learn.

March 24, 2011
I have directed Music Man jr, Guys and Dolls jr, Beauty and the Beast jr, Annie jr, and we had a fantastic time! Has anyone heard about any new broadway jr shows coming up on MTI?

March 23, 2011
We've done Beauty and the Beast most recently and had an AMAZING response. It was an awesome show for our kids to do...and our costumer came up with some STUNNING and unique designs for costumes. The music was not that hard and I think it was the most stunning show we've done. Last year Aladdin was great also. It was a "simpler" show since we didn't need to build elaborate costumes, but it was also a great success. It requires a strong male performer for Aladdin, but the rest of the roles were pretty equivilent in size. We had a female play Genie since we don't have many guys at the time. Alice in WOnderland was an amazing ensemble show. Simple costumes, fun story, we put it together in about 5 weeks and the kids worked hard and did AMAZING. I'd say any of those three would be awesome for you!

March 23, 2011
We did Flat Stanley Jr. during the summer. It is now available and is also a wonderful show, yet not as widely known. THose that were already Flat Stanley fans LOVED it. THose that never heard of Flat Stanley were amazed and so pleasantly surprised! The script and score are SO much fun. We used a cast of about 30 and included almost all of them in the sleepover scene. It was a blast having an entire cast in pajamas for the opening!

March 22, 2011
Hi Sean. We've performed the Disney Classics: Beauty and the Beast Jr, and Alice in Wonderland Jr. Both amazing, and Alice has newly updated upbeat music. Music Man Jr. would also be a great choice. Mulan Jr. was a great surprise. Wonderful show, even better than the film version. Any questions about any of these...just ask! David Bell

March 21, 2011
Seussical Jr is a great choice; it's fun, it's energetic, kids love it, and it has an ensemble large enough to fit your entire group. Personally, I think it's probably my favorite Junior show because of its wonderful music and its constant high-energy level. It gives the cast a chance to dig into the fun melodies and pop on stage. Another great thing is that sets and costumes for it can be simple or elaborate, whichever way you choose to go. The show is also a crowd favorite (after all, it is Dr. Seuss), but I think people love it for the wonderful story it tells just as much as they do for the iconic characters. Anyway, that's my two cents about the whole thing. No matter what show you do, though, break a leg!