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Limelight brings 'Seussical Jr. to Mesa Arts Center stage in August

Posted 7/8/24

A talented cast of East Valley youth performers are getting ready to wow audiences with a production of “Seussical Jr.,” scheduled Aug. 2-11 at the Mesa Arts Center.

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Things to do

Limelight brings 'Seussical Jr. to Mesa Arts Center stage in August

Posted

A talented cast of East Valley youth performers are getting ready to wow audiences with a production of “Seussical Jr.,” scheduled Aug. 2-11 at the Mesa Arts Center.

Presented by Limelight Performing Arts in Gilbert, this family-friendly musical will bring the colorful, whimsical world of Dr. Seuss to life, featuring beloved characters like Horton the Elephant, the Cat in the Hat, Gertrude McFuzz, Mayzie La Bird and JoJo, the imaginative young Who.

Based on the popular Broadway musical, “Seussical Jr.” weaves together 15 stories from Dr. Seuss’ beloved books. The production follows Horton as he discovers a speck of dust containing a tiny city of Whos. Horton faces challenges in protecting the Whos while also hatching an abandoned egg left by the irresponsible Mayzie La Bird.

Emma England, artistic director of Limelight and co-director of “Seussical Jr.,” expressed her excitement about the upcoming run.

“We have an amazing cast of truly gifted performers who are working hard to put on the best possible show,” said England. “Their energy and passion are infectious. We can’t wait for the audience to experience the magic they’ve created.”

Marie South, who co-directs the production, emphasized the unique learning experience for the cast.

“This production is not just about putting on a show; it’s about teaching kids the values of teamwork, dedication and creativity. Every performer has an opportunity to shine, and that makes the entire process incredibly rewarding.”

While “Seussical Jr.” is often seen as a children’s show, its universal themes of friendship, loyalty and the power of imagination offer a magical experience for audiences of all ages. The humor and ingenuity of Dr. Seuss’s storytelling, engaging performances of the young actors, and heartfelt themes offer a timeless appeal that transcends age.

The show also features a catchy and memorable score that gives audiences a glimpse into the vibrant world of Dr. Seuss with beloved songs including “Oh, the Thinks You Can Think!,” “It’s Possible,” and “Solla Sollew.” The music was composed by Stephen Flaherty with lyrics by Lynn Ahrens, a duo known for their work on other popular musicals such as “Ragtime” and “Anastasia.”

The set, too, gives Limelight’s production an extra dose of magic with a swing set, slide and full-size trampoline, while the messages of “Seussical Jr.” mirror Limelight’s mission “to provide meaningful and artistic experiences that build character and confidence, and give students the building blocks to pursue a career in the performing arts.”

Helping to deliver these messages are 10 Mesa cast members: Sophie Aspinall, 14, as Vlad Vladikoff; Emma Coxon, 15, as a Wickersham Brother; Scarlette Nuno, 14, as Mrs. Mayor; Edward Oster, 13, as Cat in the Hat; Colin Quintana, 15, as Horton; Rosalind Quintana, 10, as Mrs. Mayor; Savannah Springer, 14, as Gertrude McFuzz; Allie Weid, 16, as Cat in the Hat; Chase Wildung, 12, as Horton; and Krysta Wildung, 9, as a Birdgirl.

The dedication and hard work of the young performers, not to mention the enduring charm of Dr. Seuss’s stories, promise an enchanting summer outing for families.

Tickets for “Seussical Jr.” are on sale now and can be purchased at MesaArtsCenter.com, keyword “Seussical.” The run includes evening and matinee performances. Group discounts are available.

For information, visit Limelight Performing Arts on Facebook or Instagram.