CONTACT: WINSTON BARCLAY
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0073; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Nov. 17, 2000
(NOTE TO EDITORS: You can reach the Childrens Theatre Company at 612-874-0500.)
Children's Theatre Company performs 'Lyle the Crocodile' Dec. 9 &
10 in Hancher
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The Childrens Theatre Company, Americas foremost
theater for families, will perform its original stage adaptation of Bernard
Wabers popular "Lyle the Crocodile" books at 3 p.m. and 7
p.m. Saturday, Dec. 9, and at 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 10, in Hancher Auditorium
on the University of Iowa Campus.
The Childrens Theatre Company will present two free lecture/demonstrations
in the community: at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 7, at the Iowa Childrens
Museum in the Coral Ridge Mall, and at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 9, during
Story Time at the Iowa City Public Library.
During its visit to the UI, the Childrens Theatre Company will also
present two Dec. 8 performances for area school groups, as part of Hanchers
Stage Door educational series.
As anyone who has read Wabers books knows, Lyle is no ordinary crocodile.
He is a sensitive, urbane croc-about-town who lives in a brownstone on East
88th Street in New York City.
As the curtain rises on the Childrens Theatre Company production,
we meet Hector P. Valenti, star of stage and screen. He is in love with New
York City, and introduces himself, his city, and the house on 88th Street
with all the giddiness romance can induce. Hector P. also introduces us to
Mr. and Mrs. Primm and their son, Joshua, who are just moving into the house
-- and to the neighbor, grumpy Mr. Grumps, and his kitty cat, Loretta.
Inside the house everything is chaos. It is moving day and nothing is where
it should be. But theres something extra odd -- noises in the bathroom.
The noises arent nearly as surprising as whats making them. There
is a caviar-loving crocodile in the bathtub! Hector P. Valenti attempts to
introduce Lyle to the family, but only when lovable Lyle comes downstairs
doing tricks do they begin to relax. They say he can stay -- if he helps around
Lyle folds towels, makes beds, feeds the bird, sets the table, and Ms. Nitpicker,
the neighborhood gossip, loves his hors doeuvres. Everyone loves Lyle,
except for Mr. Grumps who hates him, but then, Mr. Grumps hates parades and
people, and pretty much everything. It gets worse when during a game of hide
and seek Lyle frightens Loretta up a tree. Firemen come to get her down but
get so involved in calling each other names, they fail. Mr. Grumps gets Loretta
down himself and threatens to send Lyle to the zoo if he makes one more mistake.
Of course, Lyle does make another mistake and he is carted away to the zoo.
Further complications ensue, of course, but all ends happily. Mr. Grumps even
falls in love -- with Ms. Nitpicker. It seems that happiness can be found
in just liking a person for exactly what he or she is. And Lyle is back in
his bathtub, and alls right with the world.
Lyle made his theatrical debut on the CTC mainstage ten years ago, in the
1990-1991 season, but the touring production has a whole new look, including
new sets and a fanciful new costume for the actor playing Lyle.
The Children's Theatre Company, which is headquartered in the Twin Cities,
has been called "the flagship of North American children's theater."
During three decades of performances and educational activities, the company
has developed an international reputation for staging innovative original
works and spirited adaptations of the best in children's literature.
The companys tours have included regular stops at Hancher Auditorium,
performing works including "Strega Nona," "Animal Fables from
Aesop," "Two African Tales," "The Adventures of Pippi
Longstockings," "Raggedy Ann and Andy," "Wondrous Tales
of Old Japan" and "Tremendously Tall Tales."
Hames Mobil Homes, Inc., and the Heartland Arts Fund are the corporate sponsors
of "Lyle the Crocodile," through the University of Iowa Foundation.
For audience members 17 and younger, tickets to "Lyle the Crocodile"
are $12.50, $11.50 and $10. Adult prices are $25, $23 and 20. Senior citizens
qualify for a 20-percent discount. Zone 2 and 3 tickets are available to UI
students for $10, and UI students also qualify for a 20-percent discount on
Zone 1 tickets.
Hancher box office hours are 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. weekdays and 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
Saturdays. From the local calling area, dial (319) 335-1160. Long distance
is toll-free, 1-800-HANCHER. Fax to (319) 353-2284. Orders may be charged
to VISA, MasterCard or American Express. UI students may charge their purchases
to their university bills, and UI faculty and staff may select the option
of payroll deduction.
Information and brochures may be requested by e-mail at <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
People with special needs for access, seating and auxiliary services should
(319) 335-1158. This number will be answered by box office personnel prepared
to offer assistance with handicapped parking, wheelchair access and seating,
hearing augmentation and other services. The line is equipped with TDD for
people with hearing impairment who use that technology.
For UI arts information, visit this new address -- www.uiowa.edu/artsiowa
-- on the World Wide Web. To learn more about the Childrens Theatre
Company visit <http://www.childrenstheatre.org>.
To receive UI arts news by e-mail, contact <email@example.com>.