Follow the rabbit to ‘Wonderland’

Published 12:02am Thursday, August 16, 2012

Greetings, Natchez and the Miss-Lou!

Natchez Little Theatre is celebrating 80 years of entertainment this 65th Season, and we’ll be starting the new season off with a 1960s psychedelic adaptation of Lewis Carroll’s “Alice in Wonderland.” The show opens Thursday, Aug. 23, and will run at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Aug. 24 and 25, and at 2 p.m. for a final Sunday matinee, Aug. 26. Tickets are $15 for non-members of NLT.

“Alice in Wonderland” opens in New York City in 1969, at The Factory, the home and studio of Andy Warhol, who is hosting a psychedelic party.

Alice, played by Taylor Spring, is brought to the party by her mother and eats what she thinks are colorful candies. Suddenly a white rabbit, played by Ryan McGaughey, comes through the looking glass, and Alice pursues him through the party guests and follows him back through the looking glass, landing in Wonderland, which is inhabited by all the beloved Lewis Carroll characters.

Playing the Cheshire Cat is Peter Bland, with Steen Williams as the hookah inhaling caterpillar; Morgan Mizell as the duchess; Katie Sanderson as her cook; Wade Heatherly as the frog; Dwight Adams as the Mad Hatter; Dylan Butler as the March Hare; Patricia Ware as the dormouse; Spencer Adams as the mock turtle; and Amelia Orlando as the Gryphon; Bo Allen and Michael Elliot as Tweedledum and Tweedledee.

The remaining cast members are Lenifer Adams as the Red Queen; Beverly Adams as the White Queen; Lee Dellinger as the Knave of Hearts; Don Vesterse as the King of Hearts and Andy Warhol; and Carolyne Heatherly, Lynn Mann and Judy Wiggins as the jury, with Adrienne St. John as the executioner.

The sets are an homage to the psychedelic works for Peter Max and were beautifully and creatively painted by Morgan Mizell, Don Vesterse and Judy Wiggins. The music used throughout the production will take you back to the psychedelic era of Jefferson Airplane, Pink Floyd and the Doors.

I am thrilled to direct this most creative cast who have done an awesome job in developing these crazy unforgettable characters, and I was ably assisted by Bo Allen. And Sandra Stokes of San-Jay’s Creations did an incredible job creating costumes with help from Don Vesterse, Lynn Mann and Steen Williams. Morgan Mizell has created the hallucinogenic make-up that makes this show a real trip!

There will be a benefit/preview performance at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 22, for NLT’s building fund with $10 tickets.

Don’t miss this exciting start to NLT’s 65th Season, which will also include “Sordid Lives;” “Arsenic and Old Lace;” “A Natchez Christmas Carol;” Chekhov’s “The Cherry Orchard;” “Southern Exposure;” and “Annie.”

For reservations, auditions and information, visit NLT’s website at www.natcheztheatre.org of call NLT at 601-442-2233 or toll free at 1-877-440-2233. You can also find us on Facebook!

We look forward to seeing you in Wonderland!

 

Layne Taylor is the director of “Alice in Wonderland” and the artistic and executive director of Natchez Little Theatre.