Robin Hood and Little John running through Squaw Valley | SierraSun.com

Robin Hood and Little John running through Squaw Valley

Christine Stanley
Sierra Sun

Courtesy photoMembers of a previous Missoula Children's Theater cast pose for a photo on stage.

The Missoula Children’s Theater, the largest traveling children’s troupe in the nation, will soon be visiting the North Shore and auditioning local youngsters for a classic stage performance of Robin Hood.

Hailing from Montana, the Missoula Children’s Theater was invited to the community by the Truckee Tahoe Youth Theater, which has been on hiatus for more than a year, as a way to provide an artistic opportunity to Truckee’s children and to kindle an interest in re-starting the local program, said Janet Brady, Truckee Tahoe Youth Theater board member.

“We are desperate to bring theater back to our children,” Brady said. “We are trying to recruit additional board members, plan new programming, and are also looking for community sponsors.”

Acting parts and roles behind-the-scenes will be available for more than 50 elementary and middle-school-aged participants. Also included in the program is a series of theatrical enrichment workshops for both young thespians and adult educators alike, with topics such as improvisation, make-up, miming and stage presence.

“We are about the process that the children go through, and that is what’s so unique,” said Jonna Michelson, tour marketing director for the children’s theater. “It’s less about the show and more about the growth they experience ” their creativity, self discipline and work ethic.”

What’s more? the children’s theater, now in its 35th year, visits more than 60,000 children and 750,000 audience members annually. They arrive with sets, props, costumes, make-up, lights, sound equipment and a small team of acting coaches in 1,200 communities and American military bases across the United States and in nearly 20 foreign nations every year.

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And they’re no stranger to the Sierra Nevada, having performed on the North Shore since 1983 with productions such as Pinocchio, Hansel and Gretel and Tales of Hans Christian Andersen.