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'Imagine U' Family Theatre Series to Start Nov. 6

Behind-the-scenes Saturday theater program to focus on story, movement and song

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November 2, 2010 | by Judy Moore
Imagine U

“Imagine U” is a new Saturday morning series for children aged 5 to 10 and their families that is focused on story, movement and song.

EVANSTON, Ill. --- “Imagine U,” a new Saturday morning series for young children and their families debuts Nov. 6 at the Theatre and Interpretation Center (TIC) at Northwestern University during its 30th anniversary celebration.

Focused on story, movement and song, the three hands-on programs of the 2010-11 “Imagine U” season will be led by some of Northwestern’s acclaimed theatre faculty and assisted by their talented students. Events will take place on the University’s Evanston campus.

“’Imagine U’ is designed to give children aged 5 to 10 and the ‘big people’ in their lives an insider’s look at the magical world of theatre,” says Northwestern theatre professor Rives Collins. An award-winning children’s theatre director and president of the American Alliance for Theatre and Education, Collins will lead the Nov. 6 debut program that will get participants moving, doing artwork and learning about “The Secret Garden.”

The TIC ’s “Imagine U” Saturday events begin at 10 a.m. All the programs will be held on the Evanston campus at the Theatre and Interpretation Center venues, located at 1949 Campus Drive, as noted.

Nov. 6 - “Stories from the Garden” at the Hal and Martha Hyer Wallis Theater. With help from cast members of TIC’s production of “The Secret Garden,” Rives Collins and cast members will lead families in an exploration of “The Secret Garden” -- a world of hidden keys, walled gardens and the magical powers of an open heart.  During this interactive, fun-filled session, each child will create a token of his or her visit to this enchanting storybook garden. (Performances of TIC’s musical adaptation of “The Secret Garden,” Frances Hodgson Burnett’s classic novel, will take place from Nov. 12 to 21, at Cahn Auditorium.)

Feb. 19 - “Everybody Dances!” at the Hal and Martha Hyer Wallis Theater. Northwestern faculty member and Dance Program coordinator Susan A. Lee and student performers from “Danceworks 2011” will demonstrate how to “unlock your inner dancer.” Whether to entertain, exercise, pass on tradition, tell a story or just have fun, there are many reasons why we dance. This program will have families exploring movement and forms from around the world. (The “Danceworks 2011” production will be held from Feb. 25 to March 6 at the Josephine Louis Theater and will feature the original works of Northwestern’s faculty choreographers performed by student dancers.)

May 7 - “Wee-Mu” at the Mussetter-Struble Theater. Every spring, for 80 years, Northwestern students have created Waa-Mu, a musical revue filled with all original, student-written and student-performed songs and sketches. Led by award-winning director, choreographer and Northwestern faculty member David H. Bell, this Saturday morning session will allow families to be a part of the art, interacting with cast members from Waa-Mu 2011 to learn how a song is written -- and maybe even create your very own “Mini-Mu.” (Performances celebrating the 80th anniversary of Waa-Mu will be held from April 29 through May 8, at Cahn Auditorium.)

Single-tickets for each “Imagine U” program are $5 per person and are currently on sale, as are tickets for “The Secret Garden,” “Danceworks 2011” and Waa-Mu 2011. For more information, call the TIC Box Office at (847) 491-7282 or visit www.tic.northwestern.edu.