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elephant and piggie

Mo Willems Brings Elephant Gerald & Piggie To Life in an Off-Broadway Musical

Who are Elephant Gerald and Piggie? None other than the stars of a book series written by Mo Willems, an award-winning writer who is also known for his work with Sesame Street. In January, I had the pleasure of seeing six of those books come to life in one play, titled “We are in a Play.” In the books, Elephant Gerald is formally dressed and worries all the time while his best friend Piggie is perky, optimistic and “happy go lucky.” The series is full of comedic relief and mature social concepts that could probably go over my son’s head. However, it never keeps him from laughing his head off (It’s all about how you read them).

 
mo willems elephant gerald and piggie musical

 

With that in mind, the play truly exceeded my expectations. Just like in the books, Gerald was well portrayed as the sometimes uptight, yet analytical and overly cautious friend. At the same time, Piggie was perfectly portrayed as the over-zealous and fun-hearted soul. The kids in the theatre had a riot laughing at the dynamic relationship displayed between these two.

 
we are in a play musical

 

Evan Casey and Lauren Williams brought animation, life and vibrancy to the characters through their song and dance. I know this because my family have truly gotten to know Elephant Gerald and Piggie with our own collection.

 

Mo Willems books

 

Since the day my son and I picked up our very first Mo Willems book “Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale” and watched the reenactment on stage, Mo Willems’ collection of books have become a part of our family. The whit, and educational messages speaks to this author’s knack for making children laugh while teaching some important lessons.

 

While I thought my son was not going to possibly sit through the 45-minute musical, there were all the kids in the theatre fully engaged. Even if a kid felt the whim of sleep but for a moment (which I doubt), the play was interactive enough to keep that from happening. The kids were entertained and attentive.

 

The musical covered the following Mo Willems books.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The musical was commissioned in 2012 by the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., where it had a sold-out run in the Family Theater in 2013. The Kennedy Center Theater for Young Audiences on Tour brings original Kennedy Center productions for students and families into communities and performing arts centers around the country. Artistic teams consist of carefully selected professionals from all corners of the nation who possess extensive experience with both youth and adult theater. As one of the largest incubators of theater for kids and families, the team strives to create shows that are delightful, educational and provide a foundation for a life-long appreciation of the performing arts for audiences of all ages.

 
I saw the play’s premiere at the New Victory Theatre in Manhattan, which brings kids to the arts and the arts to kids as New York City’s premier theater devoted to the highest quality performing arts for kids and families. Serving the city in all its diversity, The New Victory Theater on 42nd Street presents theater, dance, circus, opera and music from around the world at affordable ticket prices.

 

Wife to an amazing husband, mother to an exploring toddler and an MPA graduate aspiring to impact the world with encouragement in mothering and in social entrepreneurship.

Wife to an amazing husband, mother to an exploring toddler and an MPA graduate aspiring to impact the world with encouragement in mothering and in social entrepreneurship.

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