Local youth spin performance of ‘Charlotte’s Web’

Just two weeks from opening night, more than 30 children are rehearsing to bring the classic story of “Charlotte’s Web” to the stage at CNY Arts Center at the State Street Methodist Church in Fulton.

Performances are set for Aug. 16 to 18. The cast includes many children with no stage experience and multiple families involved in the action from the smallest gosling to the artistic staff.

“We are excited to work with these children,” said director Rebecca Fox. “It is great to have siblings together in the play that can help each other learn lines and find their place on stage. The lessons they learn from this experience will carry over into other aspects of their education as they develop stage presence and a sense of accomplishment being part of something bigger than their individual selves …even better to share it as a family.”

Fox, the daughter of Nancy Fox, executive director of CNY Arts Center, is visiting for a few months from Los Angeles, where she has pursued her acting career with appearances on “Glee,” “Mind of Mencia” and the reenactment TV series “I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant,” among others.

The beloved tale is the classic E.B. White story of two friends and a barnyard full of animals who work together to keep Wilbur from the butcher’s block. Charlotte, a beautiful spider, spins words of glowing comment over the pig’s pen.

As onlookers gather and marvel at the miracle overhead, Wilbur is deemed too valuable for an ordinary outcome. The story is adapted for the stage by Joseph Robinette and presented by special arrangement with Dramatic Publishing.

“This extremely large cast has worked hard to grasp the demands and commitment necessary to bring this story to life on stage. It is a new experience for most of them, parents included,” Fox continues. “We are grateful for their commitment to faithfully bring the children to rehearsals all summer long, coach them to learn their lines and help pull props and costumes together. The end result will be a great memory for all of us.”

“Charlotte’s Web” will run for three performances only: 7 p.m. Aug 16, 2 p.m. Aug 17 and 2 p.m. Aug 18. Use the Park Street entrance. For tickets, reservations or more information, visit CNYArtsCenter.com or call 592-3373.

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