Sixty local children are immersed in a world of pirates and treasure this week as they rehearse for their Friday production of “Blackbeard the Pirate.”
Unlike most theater productions, this play, from casting to performing, is done in a week. The program is put on by Tahoe Arts Project, which pays to bring Missoula Children’s Theatre to the area to make it happen. This is the 27th year TAP has brought the theatre company to town.
“The first year I heard about it, I said ‘let’s try it, let’s give it a shot and see what they can do,’” Tahoe Arts Project Executive Director Peggy Thompson said.
Two actor/directors from Missoula Children’s Theatre pack a red truck with costumes and makeup and drive to the area to spend a week putting on the show, Thompson said. They are in charge of casting and rehearsals, and one actor/director takes a role in the production.
“It’s so amazing what these kids can learn in such a short amount of time,” she said.
“Blackbeard the Pirate” is the story of a treasure hunt that takes audiences on a family-friendly journey to meet some of the most colorful buccaneers of the 17th century, according to the Missoula Children’s Theatre.
For the production, children were cast as Blackbeard and his crew of bearded pirates, sailors of the high seas, cranky crabs and crocodiles, magical mermaids and seaweed creatures, parrots and beach bums. Children in some of the smaller roles say their lines together, while others have one or two lines of their own. Children cast in larger roles take home a script to learn. Participants will rehearse for four hours a day through Thursday and will have a dress rehearsal Friday before performances at Lake Tahoe Community College.
“It’s really fun to watch, the kids are so cute,” Thompson said.