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Theatre Orangeville brings Tree Boy, Theatre for Young Audiences.

May 24, 2019   ·   0 Comments

By CONSTANCE SCRAFIELD

Tree Boy is basically a story of a boy and his tree. The tree in question has been on the family property all his life and he and his father built a tree house in it together when he was younger. So, when this boy, Avery, learns that his father has plans to cut the tree down to expand his driveway, Avery is determined to stop him. 

Relationships, the environment, responsibility, principles and so much more are packed into this truly amusing and charming play, which is being brought into schools throughout Orangeville and other towns in Ontario, as far as Bobcaygeon. 

Once again this year, Theatre for Young Audiences (TYA) is producing a real piece of theatre for youngsters to enjoy and learn the value of a live performance. Along with that, is the show itself, which concerns itself with stories that have real meaning and depth to them, all the while being funny, amazing, and very entertaining to students at all levels, from kindergarten to grade eight. 

In addition to the schools, Tree Boy is set to be produced, for one show only, next Wednesday, May 29, at 6:30 p.m. at Theatre Orangeville, for children of all ages. This is the first time for the TYA production to come into the theatre itself. Tickets are very reasonably priced. 

The crux of it is, when the generations in a family see a matter from very different points of view, how will the priorities pan out? Will a living thing that has mattered for most of a young person’s life prevail or will the harsh reality of too many cars in one family needing space to park, call it progress, mean the valued and environmentally beneficial tree has to go? 

Between the humour of Avery and his friend doing a protest sit-in, in the tree house and all the other antics the characters get up to, plus the realistic arguments between the boy and his dad – emotions and laughter are combining for an exciting entertainment. 

The point is that these shows bring with them big moral issues, presented within the marvels of a theatrical hour in their own school gym. The plays raise questions which will give food for thought, approached from different angles, depending on age and level of each student. 

The Citizen sat down with the three actors to talk about the show. Dakota Duguid, Aaron Macpherson and Daniel Reale handle the whole story. 

Ms. Duguid, coming into her fourth year at Sheridan College’s Bachelor Music Theatre Performance program, attributes her love of performing to her days wth Theatre Orangeville’s Young Company. She acted in several shows with them over her summer seasons. 

Aaron Macpherson, a native of Guelph, is a student at George Brown Theatre School and has loved performing ever since his first stage appearance at eight years old. 

Daniel Reale is back to Theatre Orangeville, having recently graduated from George Brown Theatre School. Mr. Reale has been involved with a great productions with Theatre Orangeville, Young Company, the Main Stage and TYA, as well as credits 

in other theatrical productions. 

The play presents many assumptions. Aaron made this one: “It really highlights how a person thinks when you get older. The tree house was built as a team effort between the Dad and Avery.” 

“Little Avery,” said Dan, “wants to save the tree from being cut down. The child cares and dad doesn’t – people pushing for change – that’s this dynamic.” 

“It’s interesting subject matter for an young audience,” Dakota remarked. 

Director of the show, Victoria Urquhart, commented, “How do we preserve what matters? Where did that shift happen and can it come back? That’s the forward thinking of this show.” 

Variously, they contributed, “Perhaps, it’s a little more hopeful.” 

“It’s about being kind and it’s really loud.” 

“It’s fun – it’s a blast – good characters – there’s drama, high stakes.” 

“It has a lovely pace. You rarely see that in children’s theatre.” 

They were full of praise for the travelling set, which is a full tree house that comes apart and goes back together for every show. “There’ll be a tree house in every gymnasium.” 

“This has all the elements of a good story.” 

Suddenly, there was a pause, as if a completely new thought had just dawned: “We should plant a tree!” 

Tree Boy is being presented in approximately 30 schools in and around Orangeville and at the theatre itself as a one only public production on May 29, at 6:30pm. For more information and tickets, contact the Box Office at 87 Broadway or the Information Centre on Buena Vista and Hwy 10. Call the box Office on 519-942-3423 or go online at www.theatreorangeville.ca 



         

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