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November 8, 2013

Puppets bring Blinn’s latest play to life in ‘The Musicians of Bremen’

Family-friendly comedy runs Nov. 14-17 at the O’Donnell Performing Arts Center

The Musicians of BremenBlinn College students have already tested their acting chops alongside their fellow thespians in two performances this season.

Now they’ll see how they do acting alongside puppets.

The Blinn College – Brenham Theatre Arts Program presents “The Musicians of Bremen” at the Dr. W.W. O’Donnell Performing Arts Center (map) at 7 p.m. Nov. 14-16 with a 2 p.m. matinee Nov. 17. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased at the Blinn College Box Office at 979-830-4024 or by email at BoxOffice@blinn.edu.

Elementary school performances, sponsored by the College’s Service Learning Program, will be held Nov. 13-15 at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.

The musical features puppets animated by visible puppeteers.

“The manipulation of the puppets will be a new and challenging experience for the actors,” Theatre Director Bradley Nies said. “As this is a musical play for children, it is specifically designed for their enjoyment; however, there are many references to keep older audience members enthralled as well.”
“The Musicians of Bremen” follows the tale of an aging donkey who realizes his time on the farm might be coming to an end. Before his owner can send him on his way, the donkey embarks on a journey to the nearby town of Bremen to start a new life.

During his travels, he encounters three other animals facing the same predicament: a friendly dog that is too old to tend to his flock, a tired cat that can no longer hunt mice and a grouchy rooster that often oversleeps and forgets to wake his master. The donkey, giddy with excitement to reach his new home, invites the animals to join him to Bremen, where they can start life as musicians.

Along the way, though, the animals grow weary and discover a shack that is occupied by robbers. They decide to join together and scare the robbers away and claim the shack for themselves for the night. Only, once they get inside, they find the shack might just be a good enough place to call their own.

The play, adapted from “The Bremen Town Musicians” written by the Brothers Grimm in the early 1800s, teaches children the importance of respecting their elders and that change is an important aspect of life.

The cast includes: Zachary Yoke (Leander) as the donkey, Nathaniel Guitron (Snook) as the dog, Colleen Dougan (Brenham) as the cat, Corrine Booth (Austin) as the rooster and Dallas Gonzales (Brenham), Kye Cockerham (Houston), Nora Hunt (Sugar Land), Liesl Hardin (Deer Park), Gabriel Arias (Hempstead) and Michelle Hallard (Cypress) as the robbers. 

Other cast members include: Cole Matlock (The Woodlands) as the narrator, Nathan Maler (Houston) as the farmer, Kayla Kelly (Houston) as the farmer’s wife, Brandon Theut (Columbus) as Henry and Tyler Banner (Hughesville, Mo.) as Ivan.

Stage management includes: Karen Rush (Houston) as stage manager and Jacqueline Kana (Sealy) and William O’Dell (Austin) as assistant stage managers.

Technical crews include: Aaron Cravens (Crockett) as sound designer; Christian Daigle (Hempstead), Sundi Lee (Grapeland) and Haley Wilder (Bellville) are costume running crew; Christopher Frey (Hempstead) is head electrician, Jericka Gaskamp (Brenham) is assistant scene designer and Cristian Mejia (Burton) is on scenery crew and spot operator.

The play is directed by Nies. Technical director is Kevin Patrick, and costume, choreographer, make-up and hair design is by Jennifer Patrick.

“It’s a nice and entertaining family-friendly production,” Nies said.
Blinn’s Theatre Arts Program offers a quality educational foundation through study, application and experience. For more information, visit: www.blinn.edu/finearts/theatre.