Monday, January 09, 2017

Vancouver’s Axis Theatre Company Reinvents a Classic Fairy Tale

Hamelin, A New Fable, Teaches Kids About Keeping Promises, Courage, and Cooperation   

Some modern children are so plugged in, busy, or programmed that they miss out on other valuable life experiences. Horizon Stage’s Family Matinee Series offers quality entertainment for 4 - 12 year olds that the adults in their life will enjoy as well. And the second performance in their 16/17 Family Series is no exception. Axis Theatre’s Hamelin, A New Fable on Sunday, January 22, is full of catchy tunes, funny jokes, and it teaches important life lessons to boot!

In 13th century Germany, Medieval Hamelin Town is way too big for its lederhosen. Governed by a spoiled Mayor, his Mommy, and stuffy corporate types who have no interest in its hard-working townsfolk, the town is primed to learn some significant lessons in life from 10-year-old twins Celeste and Ralph. When it seems that no one, other than their Opa Johannes, ever keeps their word, our heroes come up with a plan to make the grown-ups wake up and smell the strudel. After ridiculous new taxes render their tight-knit family homeless and desperate for help, they encounter a hapless “Minstrel”, a flute that has seen better days and of course, lots and lots of rats! With surprising plot twists,Hamelin, A New Fable, is a comedic, heart-tugging musical retelling of The Pied Piper of Hamelin, using masks and puppets in Axis Theatre’s unique physical theatre style.          

Vancouver’s Axis Theatre Company has been performing in theatres and schools across North America and around the world for 40+ years. Enriching curriculum and drawing children into stories, they encourage young people to explore and appreciate shared community values and ideas in new and interesting ways. Their 57 original works have earned 17 Jessie Richardson Awards, A Betty Mitchell Award, and a Drama Desk Nomination for Unique Theatrical Experience.

Winner of a 2015 Jessie Richardson Award for Design Concept and Execution, Hamelin, A New Fable teaches kids about keeping promises versus breaking them, bullying and greed, courage, cooperation, and honor. The themes in the production support an understanding of the importance of contributing to community, solving problems in a peaceful way, defending human rights, and exercising democratic rights and responsibilities.

So spend a cozy afternoon soaking in some valuable culture with your family at Horizon Stage on Sunday, January 22. Free pre-show crafts and activities start at 1 p.m. and the hour-long performance starts at 2 p.m. Tickets are an affordable $12 for all ages and may be purchased at the City Hall Ticket Centre (315 Jespersen Ave), by phone at 780-962-8995 or 1-888-655-9090, and online through

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