Theatre department brings childhood favorite to stage
October 5, 2009 —
“It’s always kinda funny to watch someone have a terrible day,” says theater sophomore Randall Manetta. Manetta will provide theatergoers that amusement with his portrayal of Alexander in Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.
The story follows a young boy’s (terrible, horrible, no good, very) bad day from the moment he wakes up with gum in his hair to when he has to go to bed wearing the pajamas he hates.
Chosen by theater professor Janet Rubin as this year’s youth theater production, the book was adapted in 1998 by the author, Judith Viorst, for the Kennedy Center.
The original book became a critical sensation upon its 1972 release. The book eventually won awards, including the George G. Stone Center Recognition of Merit and the Georgia Children’s Book Award.
The book is also an ALA Notable Children’s book, as well as one featured on Reading Rainbow.
Although the story calls for very few characters, Rubin decided to have a large ensemble.
The production includes a cast of 17, with many of the actors serving as parts of the scenery.
The choreographer and musical director, Amanda Mueller and Bear McBride, are both SVSU theater third years.
This is Manetta’s sixth SVSU production, but there are many minor characters who are newcomers to theater.
This includes Caitlyn Walsh and Amanda Novak.
Manetta said that although there is a lot of pressure on him, “Everyone feels the stress, especially those with small roles because they have to wait a long time for a small part and it’s hard to focus that long.”
Though he claims to have had days like Alexander’s, Manetta laughs at the character’s melodrama.
“He makes everything terrible,” he said. “He has everything a kid could want, but still has a conniption over every little thing!”
Manetta said he is glad to be doing children’s theater, though, since he believes everyone needs to take some time to act silly and uninhibited.
The show opens Saturday with 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. shows. The Sunday show is at 3 p.m.
The show will then run during the week for audiences from select schools in the area.
General admission tickets are $10, $7 for seniors and students, and $4 for children 12 and under.
Janet Rubin encourages everyone to come out and see the show: “This is a great way to spend family time in the theater with a younger sibling or even on your own. It’s a show that is great fun, so come and enjoy!”