Slide Show: Alice in Wonderland rehearsal

08/05/2011 3:16 PM |

For the fourth year in a row, the stage at Mattituck High School is lighting up this weekend with a troupe of local students led by a professional theater group.

This Saturday, Aug. 6, at 7 p.m., the group will present “Alice in Wonderland,” a modern, song-and-dance version of the classic children’s tale of the girl who went down the rabbit hole into a bizarre world.

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Laura Jens-Smith, who runs the North Fork Kids youth enrichment program, partners with the Missoula Children’s Theater, from Missoula, Mont. each summer to put on a new, unique production.

Director Ted Drury and assistant Bridget Lachowsky arrive in early August in a red truck filled with costumes and sets that they’ve spent the summer bringing to children’s groups around the country.

They begin rehearsals with local students on a Monday, and after a week of intensive rehearsals, stage the show for one night only.

“It’s amazing what they can do in a week,” said Ms. Jens-Smith, whose children also participate in the show, at rehearsal Friday morning. “There wasn’t any theater group out here for kids during the summer… . It’s great to give them an opportunity to perform on a local stage.

The students in the play range in age from 6 to 16. Three youngsters, Taylor DiDonna, Haley Unger and Madison Storm, play Alice at different times, based on whether she is big, small or somewhere in the middle. The cast includes 50 other students, who learn the choreography, lines and songs in a marathon stretch of day-long rehearsals.

Tickets to Saturday’s performance are available at the door and are $10 for adults, $5 for students under age 16 and free for children under 5 years old.

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KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | North Fork Kids will present “Alice in Wonderland” this Saturday.