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A Walk in the Woods Presented by the Enchanted Playhouse

IN THE October 13 ISSUE

FROM THE 2017 Articles,
andTerrance V. Mc Arthur,
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by Terrance Mc Arthur

Take a book of fairy tales (Three Little Pigs, Hansel and Gretel, Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Little Red Riding Hood, etc.), rip out the pages, put them in a blender, add three scoops of puns, and flip the switch. When you’re finished, you might have A Walk in the Woods, the Enchanted Playhouse production now playing at the Main Street Theatre in Visalia through October 21.

Originally, I was confused, because the only play I knew of by that title was a historical drama of ideas written about a Russian and an American leaving nuclear negotiations and working out an agreement, one that was later rejected by both nations’ governments. Instead, I found a stage full of pigs, bears, a wolf, a witch, and people of varying sizes, mixing their stories and making the audience laugh.

theatre

The Witch: Debbie Hardin ( third time playing this role for Enchanted )
Gretel: Alexis Long
Hansel: Nicholas Simpkins ( in the wooden cage).

Goldilocks (Samantha Tomasetti), a homeless girl, is being chased by bears (Adam Long, Roni Daniel, Jacquelyn Alexander), who are upset about her breaking and entering. Little Red Riding Hood (Hope Daniel) needs someone to check on her Grandmother (Jan Smith), so she loans her red outfit to Goldie. The Wolf (Noah Daniel) is hungry, and doesn’t care if he eats at grandma’s or at the homes of the pigs (Alanna Garner, Jaymee Meier, Mia Trevino). The Woodsman (Robert Meier) who comes to Red’s aid is trying to find his children—(Wait for it)—Hansel and Gretel (Nicholas Simpkins, Alexis Long-Mayberry), who are the prisoners of the Witch (Debbie Hardin). With even more characters running about, there’s enough action and chase scenes to keep children awake and grown-ups chuckling.

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Big Bad Wolf: Noah Daniel
Red Riding Hood: Hope Daniel
Goldilocks: Samantha Tomasetti

Tomasetti is sweet and perky, providing some narration during her sprints around the scenery. Noah Daniel is an indignant wolf, frustrated when all his lunch plans blow up in his face; imagine Wile E. Coyote with more lines. Hardin cackles with glee, swooping around the stage, menacing her victims without being scary (Her costume is gorgeous and shiny). Robert Meier makes a sympathetic Woodsman, remorseful over his abandonment of his children.

Jan Smith snores lustily as the Grandmother. Alanna gets good lines as Hayward Pig, Jaymee has some good moves as Stickley Pig, and Mia is all business as Mason Pig. Hope Daniel helps pull things together. Alec Haverstock as Jack Horner runs a lot, and Audelia Roth has a clear voice as Jill. Adam makes a fatherly Papa Bear, Roni is a motherly Mama Bear, and Jacquelyn squeaks a lot as the Baby Bear.

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The Three Pigs :
Alanna Garner
Jaymee Meier
Mia Trevino

Kay Whistler and Debbie Metzler directed Metzler’s script with light hands, letting the jokes and the action carry the day. Barbara Smith’s costumes transport the audience to a once-upon-a-time land, and Jill Hackbarth’s makeup turns people into the stuff that fairy tales are made of.

There are several places to eat within a block of the Enchanted Playhouse Theatre Company’s Main Street Theater, 307 East Main St. in Visalia, CA. Refreshments are available during the intermission, and the whole show is over within 90 minutes. Ticket information can be found on their website.

Take the kids. They’ll have fun.
Take the grandparents. They’ll have fun.
Take yourselves. You’ll have fun.
It’s that kind of show.

Check out more theatre reviews & other local entertainment articles in our Arts & Entertainment section.

Terrance V. Mc Arthur is a Librarian with the Fresno County Public Library and has published several short stories.

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