SARATOGA SPRINGS – Saratoga Children’s Theatre is currently preparing for “Alice in Wonderland Jr.,” an enchanting and charming adaptation of the classic Disney film and the novels “The Adventures of Alice in Wonderland” and “Through the Looking Glass” by Lewis Carroll. There will be three performances taking place at Saratoga Music Hall, with show times on Friday, February 5 at 7 p.m. and Saturday, February 6 at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m.
Follow Alice, the Cheshire Cat, the Mad Hatter, the White Rabbit and all your favorite characters as they trek through the strange and outlandish Wonderland, complete with plenty of musical numbers and laughs to keep audiences captivated the whole way through.
Kelsey Dodd, 8, who plays Alice (there are two other Alices as well – tall and tiny Alice) is thrilled to be able to play such an exciting, silly role.
“It’s amazing that I’m so young and I got the lead! It’s been really fun,” she said. “When I’m looking for something to do, I’ll practice my lines, even during recess. When I was researching for my role, I learned you just have to be confident in yourself.”
Maddie Pohl, who plays Mathilda, Alice’s older sister, is equally excited about her character and mentions also how SCT has helped her overall. “Acting with SCT helps with making more friends, even out of the acting world. It also helps with confidence and my imagination.”
Directing “Alice in Wonderland Jr.” is renowned soprano opera singer Irina Petrik, from Kyiv, Ukraine. Petrik is an honor graduate of the historic Gliere Music College in Ukraine and San Francisco Conservatory of Music. She has performed as a soloist and guest artist with National Philharmonic of Ukraine, Hubbard Hall Opera Theater, Lowell House Opera at Harvard, Festival of United Nations and many, many more.
“I love working with the kids,” said Petrik, who, along with her extensive performing, is a voice professor at the College of Saint Rose. “SCT has a particularly great group of families and parents that really value the importance of art in the community. I’m happy such an organization exists.”
This summer, from August 1 to 20, Petrik will be reprising her role as director at SCT for the teen troupe summer camp performance of “Pirates of Penzance.”
“Summer camp is a great way to get introduced to, and fall in love with, theatre,” added Petrik. “When kids are on stage, their inhibitions are gone. Their imagination and energy is so pure at this age. It’s like theatre magic to me, it’s make believe. It gives them a sense of freedom, and they get immersed in it.”
Tickets to “Alice in Wonderland Jr.” are $10 for those ten and up and free for children under 10. All tickets can be purchased at the door. For more information about the show or Saratoga Children’s Theatre, visit saratogachildrenstheatre.org.