Monday, February 28, 2011

The Wind in the Willows (1983)

"The Wind in the Willows," 1983. 
Foreground, L to R: Oliver Osterberg, Jon Allen, Tom Dunn, George Muschamp, Julee Cruise, Richard Long.
Background: Joseph Papke, Marnie Osterberg

Closing the Children's Theatre Company and School's 1982-83 season of plays for all ages, an adaptation (the first in the Theatre's history) of Kenneth Grahame's beloved novel "The Wind in the Willows." 
The third and final commission from guest playwright Sharon Holland (her previous scripts were the previous season's productions of  "Puss in Boots" and "Alice in Wonderland"), the play was directed by Myron Johnson with original music composed and orchestrated by Steven M. Rydberg.  Scenic design by Tom Butsch, costume design by Gene Davis Buck. 

The conceit of the adaptation had the author Grahame, his wife, son, and literary colleagues on a picnic in the country.  There the humans narrate the story while actors in full animal garb perform the action  in pantomime.  (Another adaptation of the Grahame sourcework by former resident playwright Thomas W. Olson would be produced in spring, 1995 with music by Roberta Carlson and direction by Gary Gisselman.)

The play became the fifth (and final) professional video production CTC produced with the Television Theatre Company (preceded by The Marvelous Land of OZ, Puss in Boots, Alice in Wonderland, and The Red Shoes) with video direction again by John Driver.

Video Clip 1:

Video Clip 2:

Video Clip 3:

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