“The Trials of Alice in Wonderland,” now playing at Tada Youth Theater, 15 West 28th Street in New York City, is a really good play with a lot of fun action.
The play is about Alice on trial for growing and shrinking. The central message is that you are never too big or too small to do what you want to do. You are just right the way you are.
The dancing and singing were spectacular. The whole performance was amazing. The acting was a good as a Broadway play, it was so professional. The costumes were colorful and interesting. The actors are all kids from age 8-18. There are over 80 actors in the ensemble. I would recommend this play for people of all ages.
Janine Nina Trevens, director of the play, is also the founder of Tada Youth Theater which opened in 1984, seats 100 people and puts on three different plays a year. Tada Youth Theater is taught by professional teaching artists.
Trevens said that her two biggest challenges in running the theatre are time and fundraising. “ There is always so much to do at Tada, as I am both the executive and the artistic director. I would love to spend more time on the artistic side of the theater but that is not possible. I wish we had a bigger staff and more space to do all the things that we want to do for the various age youth and teens that are involved with Tada. We need more money, which is why fundraising is so important.”
Tada is a non-profit corporation. Its income is 50% earned from class and camp registrations, box office income, school residencies and programs, and space rental, and the other half comes from government, foundation and corporate grants, fundraising events and individual donations. The budget for the first show was $1,500. Today’s budget is $1.8 million.
I asked her why she started TADA Youth Theater. “I started Tada Youth Theater to help make growing up easier for kids. I wanted to create a safe place for kids who want to learn and perform musical theater, a place where they could express themselves and not have to wait until they grow up to do what they love to do. We serve kids from all walks of life from all five boroughs as well as some parts of New Jersey, Westchester and Long Island.
“For many kids, Tada is a second home and a safe haven where they can develop their craft. The goal is not to create stars of today and tomorrow but to create people who believe in themselves and realize they can do whatever they put their mind to. Tada is a huge part of their childhood including helping in the development of social skills, critical thinking skills, emotional skills, and more.”
“The Trials of Alice in Wonderland” is running until May 17. Tickets are $15 for kids and $25 for adults.
You can visit their website, www.tadatheater.com for more information.