Rediscover the Wonder of Childhood with The Velveteen Rabbit & Carousel Theatre for Young People

I’m starting to suspect I was an odd duck as a child. I didn’t have one beloved stuffie who travelled through childhood with me. When I discovered my husband was still hanging onto his childhood bear I accused him of being a hoarder. And then I had kids. My two sons both have a stuffie that is essential to their existence. I hate to think how much money I would pay, or how far I’d travel, should the need to replace those beloved critters ever arise. So when the opportunity to see Carousel Theatre’s production of the Velveteen Rabbit arose I knew we had to attend.

Velveteen Rabbit

Victor Mariano, Amanda Testini and Steffanie Davis by Tim Matheson

Now I won’t lie, the end of the Velveteen Rabbit is tear-inducing. The original tale dwells on the fact the main character, Boy, has been very ill with scarlet fever and therefore all his possession, the Velveteen Rabbit included, must be burned. A big shout out to Carousel Theatre for not spending unnecessary time on this plot point. But nonetheless, we spent much of the drive home after the performance reassuring our boys that their stuffies could be washed and not burned.

However, the Velveteen Rabbit isn’t lit on fire (could you imagine the emotional trauma that would cause every child in the audience). The Velveteen Rabbit actually comes to life and spends the rest of his days in the woods with real rabbits. While a lovely end, the story is still poignant for everyone. The kids are trying to understand how Boy is okay no longer snuggling with the Velveteen Rabbit every night, and the parents are reeling from the fact that at some point all of our kids will grow up and no longer need their beloved stuffies. My advice: have a hard heart or bring kleenex!

But the fact a 55 minute play can garner such an emotional response speaks to the calibre of the performance. Carousel Theatre for Young People are masters at their craft; no one does children’s entertainment the way they do! The staging, the interactive performances, the pacing, and the audience engagement has kids aged 3+ years on the edges of their seats for the entire performance.

The Velveteen Rabbit celebrates boundless imagination and the power of believing. With a dash of magic, three actors transform their play space into a children’s nursery with a rocking horse, a cavalcade of mechanical toys, a kind-hearted fairy and a toy rabbit who is transformed by one little boy’s love. The Velveteen Rabbit is recommended for ages 3-8 and their grown-up companions. This story explores the transformative magic of love, even at life’s most difficult moments.

The Velveteen Rabbit:

Dates: March 3 – 25, 2018
Where: Waterfront Theatre
Address: 1412 Cartwright Street, Vancouver (Granville Island)
Website: www.carouseltheatre.caFacebook: www.facebook.com/carouseltheatre
Twitter: www.twitter.com/CarouselTheatre

Carousel Theatre presents The Velveteen Rabbit

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