Grafton – Apple Tree Arts will be presenting Disney’s “Beauty and The Beast Jr.” featuring 31 middle and high school actors Friday, Jan. 10 and Saturday, Jan. 11 at 7 p.m. at Grafton Middle School, 22 Providence Road in Grafton. Admission is $10 for adults; $8 for seniors and students and free for ages four and younger. Tickets will be sold at the door.
The popular musical is based on the original, long-running Broadway production and the Academy Award winning film, sharing the themes of transformation, tolerance and love. The play tells the story of Belle, a bright young woman living in a provincial town and the Beast, a handsome, young prince who is trapped under the spell of an evil enchantress.
“Since the musical is an audience favorite and many actors requested that we stage it, we decided it was a great way to start off our new year of theatre,” said director Lisa Scarlett, theatre arts director of Apple Tree Arts.
Musical direction is by theatre arts and voice faculty Susan Upham and Matt Mariner creative dramatics manager is choreographer. Student assistants include Kelsey Sidman, Madie Geoffroy and Ashley Berardi.
Parent volunteers are helping with many aspects of the production. Rayann MacDonald, Maria Murdock and Sarah Gowen are assisting with costumes.
Cast members include Elena Baker, Julia Chaisson, Claire Chimienti, Saket Damle, Gabrielle Felder, Kaitlyn Garden, Belle Geoffroy, Madeleine Gowan, Alison Graves, Anwita Gudivada, Abigail Hise, Nora Iadarola, Samantha Kelly, Nida Khan, Caelan Laverty, Natalie Leonard, Ella MacDonald, Olivia Marrone, Kendra Miner, Madison Mooney, Alma Mwangi, Lindsay Mulvehill, Amanda Murdock, Madison Otis, Sunjeevni Patel, Anya Pochiraju, Caroline Ramsdell, Kaitlyn Randell, Dylan Rowe, Marley Shaw, Carly Simpson, Megan Torres and Ava Walker.
Apple Tree Arts is a nonprofit 501 (c) 3 organization that has grown to serve over 1,500 children and adults annually with early childhood music classes, group keyboard lessons, private music and voice instruction, ensembles and theatre arts programs. The school provides a wide range of performances, special community musical, theatre arts events year-round and concerts. For more information, visit www.appletreearts.org.