Reviewed by Amalisha HuEck
A Family Musical, the classic tale of HANSEL & GRETEL inspired by the adored story from the Brothers Grimm, provides excitement, anticipation, and enthusiasm for the little ones ages 3-9, who become a part of the show right from the start. With their little honest hearts, they participate from their seats in the audience by so openly giving assistance on the presented questions. It is so adorable and such an absolutely precious experience to listen to their guidance.
The play opens with the charming witch and her witchy happy song 'It's great to be a witch!' who is looking for someone to eat from her house some of the bad sweets and to become lazy, so she can make them a part of the wonderful world of the witch. Desperate about losing his job, the father cannot do anything to provide food for his children and sings, 'How much wood can a woodcutter cut, if the woodcutter does not have any wood?'
His children (Hansel and Gretel) have nothing to eat except some leftover breadcrumbs. When a brother and a sister ran from home to find food and make their little stomachs happy, they realize that running from home is not the way and that 'having a family makes the family more of a family.'
By trying to find some nourishment, they get in a mess of trouble by being lost in the woods and they stumble across the witch's house who immediately imprisoned them. The breadcrumbs they left to help them find their way back home a yellow Birdie, who lost her flock of birds, ate on the witches' suggestion, and with the breadcrumbs gone - they are lost for good. But miracles do happen. Driven by love and need for his children their father finds them and does what fathers do - rescues and protects them.
Theatre West at 3333 Cahuenga Blvd. West, LA 90068 presents Storybook Theatre's plays for children. HANSEL & GRETEL is one of them. Book by Lloyd J. Schwartz and Music and Lyrics by Hope and Laurence Juber this exuberating show fills the hearts of everyone present with joy and exhilaration with a perfect time for the little ones, slightly below an hour. Produced by Barbara Mallory and under the direction of Lloyd J. Schwartz and choreographer Bonnie Kalisher Dukes 'Hansel and Gretel' is an ideal entertainment for the whole family. Stage managers are Leesa Freed, David P. Johnson, and Liv Denevi. And the Theatre West Managing Director is Eugene J. Hutchins.
The appearance of the actors Kathy Garrick (the Witch), Will Collyer/David Mingrino (Father/Woodcutter), Elise Walters (Gretel), Hasan Crawford/Oscar Nava (Hansel), and Barbara Mallory (Birdy) is through the Agreement between Theatre West and Actor's Equity Association. Understudies are Melodee Fernandez, Jessica Rawls, and Amelia Vargas.
The actors are a delight, fully committed to their roles. They sing with true joy, and they enjoy entertaining the little innocent kids. This interactive play with music is highly recommended for a delightful afternoon with fun and joy for the whole family to enjoy.
The Show runs from thru June 3, 2023, on Saturdays at 1 p.m. All seats are $15. For ticket reservations call 323-851-7977 (Box Office) Online ticketing:
For groups of ten and more call 323-851-4839 (Office)