ArtsPower brings ‘Chicken Dance’ to TPAC

Tale fol­lows barn­yard fans in pur­suit of ‘Elvis Poul­try’

Record Observer - - Arts & Entertainment -

WYE MILLS — Na­tion­ally tour­ing com­pany ArtsPower brings the fam­ily mu­si­cal com­edy “Chicken Dance” to the Todd Per­form­ing Arts Cen­ter at Ch­e­sa­peake Col­lege on Fri­day, May 13, at 7 p.m.

ArtsPower’s new­est mu­si­cal por­trays the col­or­ful story of Marge and Lola, two barn­yard chick­ens on a mis­sion to win the barn­yard tal­ent con­test first prize of two tick­ets to see the great Elvis Poul­try in con­cert! But first, they must present a per­for­mance that will score higher than a flock of very tal­ented ducks who seem to have the con­test locked up. Can Marge and Lola face their chal­lengers, against all odds, and win the tal­ent con­test?

ArtsPower was founded in 1985 by iden­ti­cal twin broth­ers Gary and Mark Black­man, who were then jazz mu­si­cians and res­i­dent artists with a com­mit­ment to ed­u­cat­ing chil­dren about jazz mu­sic. From their keen in­ter­est in bring­ing high qual­ity mu­sic per­for­mances to chil­dren, ArtsPower was born.

In 1989, ArtsPower pro­duced its ver y first Ac­tors’ Equity mu­si­cal theatre pro­duc­tion, en­ti­tled “Four Score and Seven Years Ago,” writ­ten by Greg Gun­ning and Kath­leen Hu­ber, with mu­sic and lyrics by Broad­way com­poser John Forster. This poignant mu­si­cal fo­cused on the courage and tenac­ity of an AfricanAmer­i­can pro­tag­o­nist in his strug­gle to over­come prej­u­dice and in­jus­tice.

“Four Score and Seven Years Ago” not only fos­tered pride in Amer­ica and the young hero it por­trayed, it put ArtsPower in the na­tional spot­light as a pro­ducer of an ex­cep­tional piece of theatre for young peo­ple and adults.

In 1990, the Black­mans and Artis­tic Di­rec­tor Greg Gun­ning set their sights on pro­duc­ing other orig­i­nal works that they be­lieved had rel­e­vance to the lives of young peo­ple. In ad­di­tion, their ex­pe­ri­ences as per­form­ers, and now pro­duc­ers, had taught them how well-crafted, com­pelling art — par­tic­u­larly when ex­pe­ri­enced at a young age — can make a real dif­fer­ence in peo­ple’s lives.

Tick­ets for the show are $9. For tick­ets or more in­for­ma­tion, call the TPAC box of­fice at 410-827-5867. This per­for­mance is funded, in part, by Best Western-Kent Nar­rows.

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