SCERA Center for the Arts is pulling out all the stops for its production of Disney's My Son Pinocchio.
The show tells the story of Pinocchio, the wooden puppet made famous by Disney's 1940 film, through the perspectives of his father, Geppetto, and the Blue Fairy. It features music and lyrics by Wicked composer Stephen Schwartz in addition to "When You Wish Upon a Star" and "I've Got No Strings" from the film.
The spectacle in SCERA's production is astounding for a community theatre. The Blue Fairy is suspended in mid-air on a crescent moon, and flashing lights and other surprises abound. The Pleasure Island scene alone is worth the price of admission. The show's creative puppetry makes technical director and puppet designer Nat Reed the star of the show. His integration of Pinocchio's costume with bunraku-style puppetry is magical.
Special mention must be made of director/choreographer Mindy Young for the work she did with the extremely large cast of children. The scenes involving the entire cast are well-orchestrated and enjoyable to watch.
The strong leading cast includes Jim Murphy (Geppetto), Rebekah Osmond (Blue Fairy), Robert Oldroyd (Pinocchio), Cole McClure (Buonragazzo/Ringleader), and Shawn Mortensen (Stromboli).
In true community theatre fashion, two of the cast members also double as designers (and excel in both areas). Cole McClure's costumes and Shawn Mortensen's sets are whimsical and impressive.
If you're looking for a show to take the whole family to see, My Son Pinocchio is a wonderful choice.
The musical will be performed through May 12. For tickets, call the box office at 801-225-ARTS (2787) or visit www.scera.org.
Photo Credit: Robert Oldroyd (Pinocchio), Jim Murphy (Geppetto), and Rebekah Osmond (Blue Fairy). Photo by Mark A. Philbrick.