RiverStars Performing Arts presents CANDYLAND

by | Nov 4, 2018 | Culture, Nonprofit, Schools, Youth

RiverStars Performing Arts premiers an original holiday dance theatre show, Candyland on Saturday, December 8th at 7:00 pm and Sunday, December 9th at 5:00 pm at Lorna Byrne Cafe Theatre.  Reserved Seating is $20 per ticket, General Tickets are Pay-What-You-Can.


Candyland is the destination for a gaggle of adolescent nursery plants who, bored with their repetitive cycles of light, food and water, concoct a plan to get out of the nursery and visit the famed sugar land where pleasure and copious choice await.  Upon arrival, they meet King Candy, who at first seems magical, but slowly evolves into a fearsome antagonist intent on permanently damaging the teens.


Meet Russell the Brussel Sprout, Gracie the Groundcherry, Linda the Loud Lettuce, Pete the Hot Pepper, little Sprout, Oni the Egyptian Walking Onion, and Tom the tomatillo in this hilarious and adventurous romp into the fructose lined utopian world of Candyland.  You’ll visit Gusher Falls, Lifesaver rapids, The Mallows, Pop Rock Quarry, Jawbreaker Cliffs, and Laffy Taffy Skies.  Each of these lands will bring you on a surprising journey through some of America’s more perilous temptations. When you emerge, hopefully you’ll land safely back in one of our country’s most cherished holiday traditions…the family feast.


RiverStars Performing Arts, now in its fifth year of productions, has become a cultural cornerstone of the Illinois Valley, serving 85 families with dance and theatre programming.  Origins hail back to a $270,000 grant from the Oregon Community Foundation in 2013, who has since designated RiverStars a “model organization.” RiverStars is a partnership between The Illinois Valley Community Development Organization, dancefarm, and Three Rivers School District.  The program is centered at Lorna Byrne Middle School but is open to all public, private and homeschooled youth.


Founder and Lead Educator Gina Angelique says, “What sets RiverStars apart is not only the quality of the young performers who develop quite a skill set in dance and theatre, but their participation in the writing of the original shows which make our work relevant to our own rural community we so joyfully serve. Ultimately RiverStars challenges youth to develop discipline, commitment, responsibility and artistic risk taking in order to better contribute to the quality of our productions.”


“We start with the TwinkleStars and EverStars who have 2-4 hours of programming a week, then in Middle School the ArtNovas have 4 hours of programming a week.  Once they have participated in 4 shows and have completed 2 years of ArtNovas, they are eligible to audition for the ArtStars, our most experienced and dedicated group of performers who engage in 14 hours of programming a week.”


Arts Educator, Lindsey Jones says, “Every season, the teaching team and I are more and more excited to see the students growing and finding their unique place as artists.  I am constantly amazed to see students who started quietly burst out of their shells. It is a privilege to know these young people and to experience our community through their eyes.”


Over the years RiverStars has graduated some top notch performers, and this year we see many new talents coming to the forefront including Owen Dwyer, Annie Hertler, and the debut of Rosemary Stabb.  They will be joined by outstanding veteran performers Na’amah Ocean and Isadora Millay. This group of young actors and dancers have contributed substantially to the writing and development of the Candyland story, which incorporates a bit of the absurd, traditional dance theatre, and personification to create a candyland style.


Angelique adds “An extra special treat for those coming to Candyland will be the performance of arts educator Lindsey Jones as King Candy.  A fearsome presence, (Lindsey will be performing on stilts), King Candy becomes a ruthless antagonist against whom the characters must struggle in order to get home.  Candyland is loosely inspired by both “A Christmas Carol,” and “The Wizard of Oz.”  For those who don’t like to sit on the sidelines, there will be plenty of opportunity for audience participation in this year’s RiverStars production.


Make your holidays complete by attending RiverStars annual holiday show.  It’s a tradition that brings joy to your family and is affordable for all!  Candyland runs Saturday, December 8th at 7:00 pm and Sunday December 9th at 5:00 pm at Lorna Byrne Cafe Theatre in Cave Junction.  Reserved Seating is $20 per ticket, General Tickets are Pay-What-You-Can. Call 541-649-2333 for more information and like us on Facebook.com/IVRiverstars.

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