Orlando Family Stage (Orlando REP), in partnership with UCF, is proud to announce its 2018 – 2019 Season! Orlando Family Stage is Florida’s only professional theatre for families and young audiences, and has staged recent box-office hits such as Disney’s Newsies The Musical and Madagascar – A Musical Adventure! Orlando REP’s 2018 – 2019 is presented by Florida Hospital.

The fall kicks off with A Year With Frog and Toad TYA (September 4 – 30, 2018). Celebrating the values of enduring friendship, this Tony Award-nominated musical follows Frog and Toad through four fun-filled seasons. Along with their forest friends, the pals learn life lessons through planting gardens, swimming, raking leaves, and sledding.  Based on the beloved books by Arnold Lobel, this jubilant musical celebrates kindness, imagination, differences, and the power of friendship. With catchy songs and vivid characters, this show is perfect for the whole family! Presenting sponsor: Orange County Arts & Cultural Affairs.

She’s back! Junie B. Jones returns to Orlando Family Stage once again in an all-new show, Junie B. Jones is Not A Crook (September 24 – November 4, 2018)! Something awful has happened at school – someone has stolen June B.’s new furry black mittens!  But when Junie B. finds a fantastically awesome pen, it’s okay to keep it, right? Finders keepers! Besides, there’s a new handsomest boy in class who she is determined to impress… and she has competition! She found the pen, so Junie B. Jones is not a crook, right? Right?! Junie B. Jones struggles with the issue of honesty in this hilarious and heartfelt story based on the best-selling book series by Barbara Park. Presenting sponsor: Orange County Arts & Cultural Affairs.

“The best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear…” Elf The Musical takes the stage this holiday season (November 12 – December 30, 2018). Buddy the Elf has spent his entire life at the North Pole. When he discovers that he is not really an elf, he sets off for New York City to find his true identity. Faced with the harsh reality that his real father is on the naughty list and his half-brother does not even believe in Santa, Buddy is determined to win over his new family and help New York remember the magic of Christmas. This modern holiday classic is sure to have everyone embracing their inner elf. Presenting sponsor: Orange County Arts & Cultural Affairs.

The New Year begins with Ella Enchanted The Musical (January 28 – February 24, 2019). Aren’t fairy godmothers supposed to be helpful? Ella has been given the “gift” of obedience, placing her under a spell that forces her to do as everyone commands her. Strong-willed Ella embarks on a quest to reverse this curse, and encounters ogres, giants, fairy godmothers, and a handsome prince along the way. Based on the Newbery-winning book and popular film, Ella Enchanted is a modern musical twist on the Cinderella story as Ella seeks to find her own voice and live as her true self.

Inspired by music made famous by The Beatles, Beat Bugs: A Musical Adventure hits the stage February 25 – April 7, 2019. Meet the Beat Bugs – five insect pals who explore the world and pick up life lessons along the way in this new musical, based on the Netflix animated series that incorporates songs of that famous band. Walter, Buzz, Jay, Crick, and Kumi embark on a mission to save Strawberry Fields from being taken over by a stink bug with other plans for it. Some of the songs from the iconic catalogue that appear in the show include “All You Need Is Love,” “Come Together,” “Yellow Submarine,” “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds,” “Strawberry Fields Forever,” “Eleanor Rigby,” and “With A Little Help From My Friends.”

“Oh, the thinks you can think…” Seussical The Musical TYA (April 8 – May 12, 2019) bursts onto the stage in a fantastical, spectacular, musical extravaganza by Tony Award-winning composers Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty. Beloved characters – including Horton the Elephant, The Cat in the Hat, Gertrude McFuzz, and the Whos – collide in a journey spanning from the Jungle of Nool to the Circus McGurkus. As Horton struggles to protect the Whos from injustice while sheltering an abandoned egg, will the powers of friendship, loyalty, family, and community be able to triumph? The Cat in the Hat is your magical master of ceremonies in this sensational smorgasbord of Seuss stories.

But that’s not all… Orlando REP’s 2018 – 2019 season also includes limited engagements. Orlando’s favorite rock band for children and families takes the stage for A Mr. Richard & The Pound Hounds Halloween Concert on October 26 & 27, 2018 for its 6th year (Presenting sponsor: Orange County Arts & Cultural Affairs). With sing-along tunes about fish, skunks, cool snakes, and Halloween fun, Mr. Richard & The Pound Hounds play great music for hip kids, who can preview their costumes by wearing them to the concert before the big night! Award-winning magician and comedian Tony Brent returns for the 8th year with Pip-Squeak: An Anti-Bullying Magic Show (January 14 – 19, 2019). Because of his small size as a child, Tony was bullied in the cafeteria, in the gymnasium, on the playground, and generally anywhere there were no adults present. Now using comedy, amazing magic tricks, juggling, and a coat-rack loaded with costumes, Tony gently and humorously teaches children how to cope with being bullied. In addition, children learn to recognize the signs of bullying and whether or not they themselves might be guilty of bullying. Orlando Family Stage will also participate in the 5th Annual UCF Celebrates The Arts at The Dr. Phillips Center in spring of 2019.   

The season also includes productions by students of the Orlando Family Stage Youth Academy, including Big Fish The Musical on July 13 – 29, 2018 (Presenting sponsor: Orange County Arts & Cultural Affairs) and the 16th Annual Writes of Spring production, comprised of winning entries from Central Florida’s school children. Additional Youth Academy productions are forthcoming. Orlando Family Stage continues its successful community engagement programs with such groups as Edgewood Children’s Ranch, Girl Scouts of America, and the Orlando Union Rescue Mission. Orlando Family Stage also continues its ELTA program, in partnership with The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and Orange County Public Schools, focused on training teaching artists for school residencies.

Orlando REP’s 6th Annual Holiday Family Gala is the only holiday gala created specifically for families and features a private holiday dinner, themed photo booth, visits with Santa, and opportunities to win gift baskets before an exclusive performance of Elf The Musical in December. Detailed ticketing information is forthcoming.

Orlando Family Stage also provides ASL-interpreted shows and Sensory-Friendly performances, specially designed for children with autism, Asperger’s, or other sensory processing disorders and special needs. Orlando REP’s Sensory-Friendly series is sponsored by Massey Services, Inc. Backstage tours are held on select dates, for which tickets will soon be available.

Public performances of Orlando REP’s season productions are Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. and 5:30 p.m., with tickets starting at $15. School matinee performances are Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. Subscriptions are available for renewal beginning June 11, 2018 and single tickets go on sale July 2, 2018. For more information about Season Subscriptions, Field Trip Reservations, or Orlando REP’s 2018 – 2019 season, please call 407.896.7365. Auditions for Orlando REP’s professional shows are taking place in June.

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