Wednesday, March 4, 2009

City Circle's Bear

City Circle - City Circle Acting Company of Coralville will present The Arkansaw Bear, a family friendly show for all ages March 6, 7, 13, and 14 at 7:30 p.m. and March 8 and 15 at 1:30 p.m. in the Playworks Theatre of the Iowa Children's Museum.

The Arkansaw Bear, written by Aurand Harris – America's foremost playwright for young audiences – is the tale of Tish, a young girl who struggles to accept her grandfather's death.

Saddened and bewildered by her grandfather's approaching death, Tish runs to her special tree. There, in a world of fantasy, her wish is granted when she meets The World's Greatest Dancing Bear.

The bear is old, like Tish's grandfather, and is running away from death. In trying to help her, Tish begins to understand the meaning of both life and death, which helps her to cope with her own sadness.

Delightfully theatrical with music, magic, and dance, and enthusiastically applauded by family audiences, The Arkansaw Bear is a wonderful way for children to learn about loss, grievance, and memory in an uplifting and meaningful way.

On Sunday, March 8, American Sign Language Interpreters will interpret the show for members of the Cedar Rapids Association of the Deaf and the UI ASL Club.

In conjunction with the themes of the show, "Coping with Loss" workshops for children and families will be open to the public Saturday, Feb. 21 and Saturday, March 7, both at 2:00 pm. Advanced registration is required by calling the Iowa Children's Museum at 625-6255.

Tickets are $14 for youth, students, and seniors, and $17 for adults and are available at J. Frahm Music, Coralville Recreation Center, or by calling 319/248-1750.

The cast, which is listed below, includes local actors from five surrounding communities.

The show is directed by Jason Hedden, a Wilton, Iowa native. Hedden has previously directed plays for City Circle's New Play Festival series as well as On Golden Pond for Iowa City Community Theatre. For more information, contact the director at

The creative team also includes lighting design by Will Brown, set construction by Maria Schroeder, music direction by Ben Bentler, and set design by the award-winning Michael Blake.


TISH — Ali Heath, Iowa City
STAR BRIGHT — Kit Gerken, Iowa City
MIME — Dawn Clarke, Coralville
THE GREAT RINGMASTER — Megan Bohlke, Iowa City
LITTLE BEAR — Amy Ostrem, Iowa City
MOTHER — Elisabeth Ross, Coralville
AUNT ELLEN — Ellen Stevenson, Tiffin
ANNOUNCER — Richard Paulus, West Branch

Check back for a review of this show.

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