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Saturday, Aug. 27, 2016

Production of Peter Pan: Dreams and imagination

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Two of the Lost Boys duel during a recent dress rehearsal.
SIKESTON -- To visit Neverland, all you need is trust and a little pixie dust -- that or tickets to the Sikeston Little Theater's youth production this weekend.

The pixie dust may be easier to come by.

Tickets for performances of the musical "Peter Pan" scheduled at 7 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and at 2 p.m. Sunday went on sale Monday at Collins Music in downtown Sikeston and sold out that same day.

"They have added a performance for the Oct. 20th at 1 p.m.," said Cheryl Tarter at Collins Music.

Tickets for this additional performance went on sale to theater members and cast members Saturday. If any remain, they will be made available to the public Monday. Tickets are $6.

Carly Schneider strikes the classic Peter Pan pose while Hannah McClellan as Wendy looks on.
"I think it just shows that the youth program at the Little Theater is just amazing," said Jon Ginder, 16, who plays Captain Hook/Mr. Darling in the production. "They've done a wonderful job with it."

The play is directed by Amber Holman of Sikeston who also suggested this musical for the youth production.

"My first major role that I had in a production was 'Peter Pan' -- it's my favorite children's production. It's just near and dear to my heart and that's why I chose it," Holman said. "I'm almost 22, but I love the whole fantasy, imagination-type thing. The whole idea behind 'Peter Pan' is you should never let go of your imagination, your ability to dream, to have fun like a child. If you do grow up too fast it becomes dull, boring. Try to hold on to the childlike attributes!"

As the youth production casts everyone who auditions, this production ended up with a cast twice as large as usual for this play.

"When we held the auditions, we had 52 kids audition," Holman said. "The audition was extremely difficult because we had so many talented kids. Everybody was just amazing. I'm just stunned by the amount of talent that's there."

Sydney Dzurny, 17, said she has been in a half dozen SLT productions but up until now has always auditioned for a supporting role.

"Normally I stay in the backstage; I don't like the main roles," she said. "Since this was my last year to do the children's production I tried for a bigger role and I got Tinker Bell."

While it is a major role, Tinker Bell doesn't exactly speak so memorizing lines was not a problem.

"I make different sounds and a lot of different facial expressions and body movements -- it's a lot of fun," Dzurny said. "I'm having a blast with it. It has been a really, really good experience. It's something different than I've done in the past."

Ginder is also an old hand with youth productions, this being his ninth run with the Sikeston Little Theater. Ginder did not specifically audition for the Hook role, however. "I just auditioned and that's what I got," he said.

This is only the second time on the stage for Tristin Zimmerman, 10, who plays Nibs, one of the main Lost Boys.

"I heard about the 'Peter Pan' play, and I said, 'Why not give it another chance? Make the people laugh,'" Tristin said.

Being cast in the role has been "a lot of hard work, a lot of practice and long hours and just trying your hardest," he said. "The hardest part would probably be memorizing all of your lines."

The best part about this production is "using a lot of props," Tristin said. "The Lost Boys get to use swords and bows and arrows."

The cast, which range from third graders to seniors in high school, also includes Carly Schneider as Peter Pan; Hannah McClellan as Wendy; Hunter Borton as John Darling and Sarah Fulmer as Wendy's daughter, Jane, among many, many others.

"It's a feast for young children because they get to use their imaginations so much," Holman said. "Energy levels are just pressing out the walls; it's really good. There is so much parental involvement which is also great. The parents have been fabulous."

"I'm just helping with the set work in the back," said Lori Zimmerman, Tristin's mom. "It's time consuming but it will be worth it to see the play come out a success, to see a smile on his face when it's all done."

"We've got a lot of funny scenes, a lot of funny characters," Tristin said. "If you come, you are expected to see a lot of laughter."

"The excitement is building -- I'm anxious and nervous all at the same time," Holman said. "But I've got a great staff and crew so I'm not worried a bit."