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Seuss stories bring music and mayhem to Ilford stage

10:18 18 April 2013

The Cat in the Hat played by Richard Sheepwash.

The Cat in the Hat played by Richard Sheepwash.

Archant

Be transported into the fantastical, magical, musical world of Dr Seuss when one of the most performed and best-loved shows in America takes centre stage in Ilford.

Forest Musical Productions presents Seussical The Musical, bringing some of the writers’ favourite characters to life in one story.

The Cat in the Hat will act as host, and all-round mischief-maker, in this romp through the Seuss classics.

The story follows Horton the elephant, who faces a challenge or two after he hears a cry for help coming from a small speck of dust.

He ends up promising to guard Mayzie La Bird’s egg, despite facing constant ridicule, kidnapping, and a kangaroo court trial.

Ultimately, the powers of friendship, loyalty, family and community are challenged and emerge triumphant, in a story that makes you laugh and cry.

Owen Smith, who plays Vlad Vladikov, said: “The show is so colourful and bringing all the characters from a variety of stories together works really well.

“I play a hyena who is a little bit sinister and winds everything up. You can really have fun with a show like this as all characters are larger than life.”

Owen, who has directed a number of shows for Forest, added: “It was nice to dust off my ballet shoes and get back on stage. The show really is two hours of pointless fun.”

Director Alison Buckingham has compiled a study and activities booklet, which the company has sent out to schools, libraries, and youth groups in Redbridge.

The idea is to help teachers plan lessons and fun activities, prompting classroom discussions of some of the common themes in the musical and the Dr Seuss books.

The witty, fast-paced music from the writers of Ragtime engages adults, while the well-loved characters in their colourful costumes will delight children. This will be a hit with the whole family.

n The show is on at the Kenneth More Theatre, Oakfield Road, Ilford from tomorrow (Friday) until Sunday. Call the box office on 020 8553 4466.

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