CEDAR CITY – Travel back in time to the faraway land of Siam in the mid 1800’s with the cast of the Cedar Valley Community Theatre, as they bring alive their own rendition of the 1951 Broadway classic “The King and I.”
The well-known play, based on the 1944 production “Anna and the King of Siam” by Margaret Landon, opens Friday to a VIP audience and Saturday to the public, with additional public showings Monday, Feb. 6, Feb. 7 and Feb. 9.
The colorful cast will take the audience to a time when western culture permeated the east, and a young king was working to bring the best the west had to offer into his kingdom.
While taking very few liberties with the production, Director Edwina Jones said she still has a few surprises in store for the Heritage Center Theater audience. Lovers of the play should pay close attention to the gender role switch of one character in particular.
“Traditionally, the role is played by a boy,” Jones said. “But after we finished casting, we realized there were very few boys in our company to work with, so we changed the role to a girl.”
Of the 42 cast members, more than a quarter of them are children, said producer Dean Jones.
“We have 14 kids who are going to steal the show,” he said.
The Cedar Valley Community Theatre has been working on the production of The King and I for three months straight, working up to 8 hours a day to prepare, the director said.
All of the actors and crew members volunteer their time, she said, and no one is paid. In addition to the time invested in practice and preparation, most of those involved in the community theater work full-time jobs or go to school full time.
“This is kind of like a hobby for us,” Edwina Jones said. “Coming here and working whatever hours I do, is also a way of spending family time.”
While her husband is producing the play, and her daughter is acting in the play, Edwina Jones said; hers is not the only family to use the Cedar Valley Community Theatre as a way to spend quality time together. There are several families who act and work together, she said, and by the time all is said and done, the whole group becomes its own family of sorts.
Though Edwina Jones had a vision of how she planned to direct the play from the start, she has been open to suggestions from the actors she has been working with, and that has allowed the vision to evolve into what it has become. The effort has been a collective one, she said.
“So the main vision was there from when we started working on this,” she said. “But then, actors would do things a certain way, and we would incorporate that, because it worked so well.”
- What: Cedar Valley Community Theatre’s production of The King and I
- When: VIP showing | Invite only| Jan. 30
- Public showing | Jan. 31, Feb. 2, Feb. 6, Feb. 7 and Feb. 9
- Where: Heritage Theater, 105 N. 100 East, Cedar City
- Fee: General Admission | $8 for adults, 5 for children 17 and under
- Center Seating |$12 for adults, $9 for children 17 and under
- Preferred Seating | $15 for adults, $12 for children | includes a blanket rental, bottle of water, and one concession item
- Tickets: Can be purchased at the Heritage Center Theater in advance, or at the time of the show
- Theater opens at 6:30 p.m. | doors open at 7:00 p.m. | show starts at 7:30 p.m.
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