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Warren Gerds/Critic at Large: ‘James at the Giant Peach’ musical scheduled in Manitowoc

Critic At Large

Peter Quince Performing Company

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MANITOWOC, Wis. (WFRV)

Peter Quince Performing Company will present four performances of the musical “James and the Giant Peach” at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 8-10 and 3 p.m. Aug. 11 in University Theatre of the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, Manitowoc Campus. Info: pqpc.org.

The youth-driving company is in 51st season of present a large-scale musical each summer.

The current production is an offbeat adaptation of the classic Roald Dahl adventure, “James and the Giant Peach,” with book by Timothy Allen McDonald and music and lyrics by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul.

Roald Dahl is known for his bent (macabre) sense of humor, and that will be found in this show.

The story starts with James having a nightmare while sleeping at the orphanage, remembering his parents getting eaten by a rhino at the London zoo. He wakes up in a cold sweat. He then explains to a ladybug and grasshopper on the ground his life problems. The next morning, James is informed that he is leaving the orphanage to live with his two aunts in Dover.

Instead of chopping down the old fruit tree like his aunties asked, James discovers a magic potion that makes an old peach grow to an enormous size. After finding a door to climb inside, James meets a group of outrageous oversized insects who have made the peach their home.

James and his newfound friends decide it’s time to leave the aunties, and they roll their peach into the ocean and embark on a fantastic voyage that lands them on top of the Empire State Building.

Aside from James, characters include Ladybug, Grasshopper, Ladahlord, Sponge, Spiker, Earthworm, Spider and Centipede.

The book is from 1961. Various versions of the musical have been mounted.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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