Children’s Theatre spends ‘Night at the Wax Museum’

Ace Clark, left, portrays Skip Webster as Maya Mosley portrays Heather Fairchild in The Children’s Theatre production of “Night at the Wax Museum.” (Delaware State News/Marc Clery)

DOVER — A group of summer school students get more than what they bargained for in “Night at the Wax Museum” when the historical figures they’ve been assigned to look after come to life.

The Children’s Theatre will performance of “Night at the Wax Museum,” at Wesley College’s Wells Auditorium Jan. 20 at 7 p.m. and Jan. 21 at 2 p.m.

“When we were looking through the catalogue at our options for this performance we passed ‘Night at the Wax Museum’ and I remembered how great it was the first time (in 2011) and after looking and looking, I just couldn’t stop thinking about it,” director Carol-Ann Harding said.

From left, Rachel Hammond as Emily Blake, Sofia Patti as Lupe Lopez, Hadley Lewicki as Carrie Gale, Joey Hagan as Joel Kreeble, Justin Boyer as Victor Tates and Jonah Cerri as Rolf Rizzo.

“When we got to the first reading, I knew it was the perfect choice because all the kids were laughing and having so much fun during the first read-through,” she said.

“It’s really funny to see when the characters from such different time periods meet,” said Kayla Mercer, playing the role of Calamity Jane. “Even though they’re all famous figures, they don’t know who the other ones are. They’re not on the same page at all.”

A prime example is when King Henry VIII falls in love with Cleopatra and John Adams serves as the divorce lawyer between King Henry and Anne Boleyn despite no one even knowing John Adams’ role in American history, or that the United States is even a country for that matter.

The comical interactions between the characters intensify once it becomes known that there is a great treasure to be found inside the museum.

“Everyone knows that there is this treasure up for grabs and it’s supposed to be the best treasure of all time. But none of the characters know what it actually is,” said Giovanni Harding, who is playing the role of Blackbeard.

“I love all the chaos that happens when everyone is searching for the treasure,” said Mya Mosley, acting the role of Heather, the summer school teacher.

“Night at the Wax Museum” will be Mya’s last performance with the Children’s Theatre after being a member for six years.

“It’s kind of sad to be finished because it’s always been a lot of fun and I’m glad that my friends convinced me to audition because it’s an interesting hobby and I’ve made friends with a lot of great people,” she said.

Despite the actors ranging in age from 8 to 16, the roles span from school children to women in their 60s.

Fourteen-year-old Sarah Finney and 12-year old Evie Snyder play two elderly women who are co-chairs of the museum.

From left, Michaela Spangler as Cleopatra, Logan Bower as Henry lll, Maria Hammond as Anne Boleyn and Jesse Rich as John Adams.

“It’s so fun to play an old person because they’re nothing like you so your character is entirely your own creation,” Sarah said.

Her character Julene Fairchild has some amusing lines, Sarah’s not used to delivering.

“I almost always have serious characters and am in more dramatic performances so it’s different but it’s fun and it’s easier to be relaxed and funny than it is to be dramatic,” she said.

“And considering I’ve had a lot of dramatic parts, it’s kind of surprising that I’ve never played someone old before since older people are usually more serious than kids.”

Alexia Nadel is also playing a character, Polly Popper, whose personality is outside her usual roles.

“She’s just so ditsy and doesn’t get all the jokes and there’s a lot of jokes,” Alexia said. “It’s been a lot of fun because I’ve never played someone like her before and it’s always interesting to play someone you haven’t before.”

From left, Maylia Roussaw as Mary Read, Abigale Peppard as Anne Bonny, Gio Harding as Blackbeard, Dominic Hammond as Pirate 1, Lillian Mandalas as Madame Ching and Elijah Givens as Pirate 2.

With the Schwartz Center for the Arts not available, “Night at the Wax Museum” will be performed at Wesley College’s Wells Auditorium — the first time the Children’s Theatre has performed there since 2011.

“The kids always had a great time performing at Wesley and for this cast, it’s the first time they’ll be performing at Wesley and I know it’s going to be a great experience for everyone,” Ms. Harding said.

Giovanni is one of the older actors in the performance and remembers when his older siblings performed there.

“I remember going to rehearsal and shows there and it was always a lot of fun so I think performing there will be a great experience,” he said.

Wells Auditorium is at 120 N. State St., Dover.

General admission tickets are $10 and can be purchased by visiting www.thechildrenstheatre.org or at the door.

Ashton Brown is a freelance writer living in Dover.

From left, Logan Babenko as Butch Cassidy, Justin Truitt as Sundance Kid, Kayla Mercer as Calamity Jane and Dissandou as Pancho Villa.

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