To celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday, the students of Upper Darby High School invite audiences on a fantastical journey to the Jungle of Nool, the Circus McGurkus and to the invisible world of the Whos as they present “Seussical,” the fun-filled musical for families and theatregoers of all ages at Upper Darby Performing Arts Center March 4, 5, 11, 12 and 13.Tickets are $10 to $11 ($1 off for children 12 and under) and may be purchased online atudpac.org or by calling the box office at 610-622-1189.
Student performers request audience members bring new books for young patients at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. The theater program at Upper Darby High School has raised the bar when it comes to the production level and technical value of musical theater.“We treat our shows more than simply an after-school activity and strive to produce a professional-quality production that is engaging and memorable for both the students who participate and the audiences that come to see it,” says director Kevin Dietzler.
With heart melting melodies and lyrics written by Tony Award winners and recent Theatre Hall of Fame recipients Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty (“Ragtime,” “Once on This Island”), “Seussical” is a lively amalgamation of many of Dr. Seuss’ most famous books. Many of Seuss’ characters are lovingly brought to life, including Horton the Elephant (Avery Leach, 12th grade), The Cat in the Hat (Rylee Curry, 10th grade), Gertrude McFuzz (Maria DiMento, 12th grade) and a little boy with a big imagination — Jojo (Cory Fitzpatrick, 12th grade), who learns the take-away lesson, “A person’s a person, no matter how small.”
Excited about performing “Seussical” for families, the cast and creative team see the show as more than just a kids’ show, but a show with a message everyone — at any age — can relate to. “Seussical is easily tagged as children’s theater, but the context behind the stories and characters is so much more,” said Dietzler. “Our cast has explored a deeper meaning behind these lovable characters that they, and even adults, can relate to on a much more mature level. This combined with the pride that they take in their work will leave the audience with a very worthwhile experience.”
Audience members are asked to bring new books to the shows for children at Philadelphia’s Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and to celebrate Read Across America on Dr. Seuss’ birthday. The Upper Darby Performing Arts Center and Upper Darby Summer Stage are jointly sponsored by the Upper Darby School District Board of School Directors and Upper Darby Township Mayor and Council through the Department of Recreation and Leisure Services.