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Old classic tale 'Rapunzel' comes to Geyer with new meaning

| Wednesday, May 8, 2013, 9:02 p.m.
Marilyn Forbes | For The Independent-Observer
Performers in' Rapunzel' include, from left, are: Joan McCann, Phil Haddad, Justin Williams and Dottie Davis. At the top, from left are: Mandy Onder and Tessa Markle.

It's always interesting to take a well-known classic and give it a bit of a twist, and that is exactly what the Geyer Performing Arts Center's production of the children's tale “Rapunzel” will do as it entertains audiences with its “new” story.

“One of the things that I like about it is that it's not a romance,” said Kat Post, Geyer education director. “It has a new twist which is something that I really like about it.”

The show will be staged as the theater's “Children's Show,” which has been an annual fundraising event at the theater for many years.

Hundreds of children from the area will attend the show during the week, then it will be staged for the public at 11 a.m. Saturday.

“This is a great opportunity for us every year to bring children through the doors of the theater,” said Kristen Tunney, Geyer manager. “It's a great way to expose these kids to live theater. They are our future and the future of theater.”

The show is a musical version of the tale and features several strong performers who will be playing the roles.

“I am so blessed to have such a talented group of singers,” Post said. “They are all college trained and they all possess great talent.”

Mandy Onder of Scottdale will be playing the title role of “Rapunzel” and said she enjoys the depth of the character and the story that unfolds as the young character finds herself in the show.

“Rapunzel is a misguided character who must come to terms with the lies she's been told by her mother,” Onder said. “I love getting to become this character because of the internal struggle she deals with throughout the play. In this show, we have a girl who was told lies her entire life so I had to find the line, literally and metaphorically, where she decides to take control of her fear and not only start discovering who she is but also discover what the world around her can offer and become if only she could go beyond her tower.”

The show is filled with songs and lively interaction and is perfect for audiences of all ages, especially children.

“This is our opportunity to address the school-aged children of our area without having to take them to a big city to experience live drama,” Post said. “Schools are pulling away from the arts and we feel it's our responsibility to do what we can to pick that up. We are going to lose the arts if we don't stand up as a community theater. Children need things such as live theater and drama and this is a great show with several wonderful messages. It's powerful and meaningful and very entertaining.”

The show will be staged at 11 a.m. Saturday and tickets will be $6.

There also will be a magician and a performance by the students of GASP following the show.

For information, call 724-887-0887.

Marilyn Forbes is a freelance writer.