Berenstain Bears Bound for Pavilion
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – The Berenstain Bears are coming to town in a new musical “Berenstain Bears On Stage!” written by best-selling authors Stan & Jan Berenstain. Produced by the Omaha Theater Company, one of the nation’s leading professional children’s theaters, this spectacular show features stories from five of the most popular Berenstain Bear books: The Messy Room, The Double Dare, New Baby, Get Stage Fright and The Truth. Elliot Lawrence, the Musical Director of the Tony Awards, and his son, four-time Emmy Award-winner, Jamie Broza, composed the music for the show, with lyrics by Stan Berenstain.
Recommended for ages 5 and older, “Berenstain Bears On Stage!” will be held Thurs., Jan. 25, 7 p.m. on the Great Hall Stage of the Washington Pavilion. Tickets are $10 for children and $24 for adults + tax and are available at the Pavilion Box Office at (605) 367-6000 or 1-877 WASHPAV. The performance is sponsored by Sioux Falls Ford, with media sponsors KSFY TV, KELO FM 92.5 and South Dakota Public Broadcasting (SDPB). This presentation is also supported by the Performing Arts Fund, a program of Arts Midwest funded by the National Endowment for the Arts with additional contributions from General Mills Foundation, Land O'Lakes Foundation, and the South Dakota Arts Council.
Starting at 5:30 p.m., Pavilion staff will offer Fun Zone activities for children in the main lobby. Free activities include story time, arts and crafts, and a meet and greet with Buddy, the SDPB mascot. Leonardo's Cafe will also open for dinner at 5:30 p.m. that evening.
“We are so fortunate to have this exciting family program come to Sioux Falls,” said Steve Hoffman, Executive Director and CEO. “The Berenstain Bears are characters that we all grew up with as children and their stories are timeless. Spending time at the Washington Pavilion Fun Zone before the performance is a great way to make this a family event.”
The books that inspired this new musical production are five of the best-selling Berenstain Bears books from the hundreds in the series. Audiences will enjoy the Bears’ charm and wisdom as they come to life on stage. Bear Country Joe, the self-proclaimed “world’s foremost expert on the Berenstain Bears,” leads audiences through the five Bear tales, and reinforces the moral of each story.
In the first scene, Mama and Papa Bear discover Brother Bear is lonely as an only cub, and surprise him with the news of a baby on the way. The show follows Brother and Sister Bear as they learn the values of keeping their room clean, standing up for themselves against bullies, telling the truth to build trust, and finally, the importance of humility. Lawrence’s delightful songs like Parents, Home Sweet Tree, You Can’t Make the Truth Out of a Lie, and You Gotta Practice enhance the action of the play, and add to the unique experience as these timeless characters come to life.
Stan Berenstain designed the sets and worked with Omaha Theater Company for “page to stage” authenticity. “Berenstain Bears On Stage!” looks like a page right out of a storybook-- a Berenstain Bears storybook, to be exact. Bright and bold, children and adults familiar with the Berenstain’s simple stories will feel right at home in Bear Country.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Images are available online at www.washingtonpavilion.org. Choose “general information” and the “media information” link. User name: media Password: photo