Family Friendly Zombie Joe

GOLDFISH_TWINS_PHOTO_8The Goldfish Twins Swim the Big Blue Sea!

Last year New York got its first taste of Zombie Joe and his mastery of adapting horror to the stage. This year he’s back, under the name Limecat Family Theatre Company, with an all-new children’s show, The Goldfish Twins Swim the Big Blue Sea!, proving equally adept at entertaining children now as he did lovers of Edgar Allen Poe last season.

Playing at both St. Luke’s Theatre (The Tortoise and the Hare’s Holiday Hoop-La) and Actor’s Temple Theatre (this show), with alternating casts, Limecat is a theater company to keep in mind for families looking to entertain and educate their wee ones through efforts of the stage.

Unlike many children’s productions that pull from existing material, Limecat creates its own characters and music in The Goldfish Twins Swim the Big Blue Sea!. Denise Devin doubles as the piece’s writer and director, maintaining a brisk pace in both capacities. Devin directs with an eye for choreography, assigning appropriate movements to each of the story’s sea creatures. Commanding a clear respect from her cast, Devin has no trouble communicating this pleasant story. Paige O’Mally (Itty) and Vicki Oceguera (Bitty) complement one another as the goldfish twins who take an accidental journey to the ocean after Bitty makes a daring move that changes their life forever. Both Mally and Vicki are smooth in their executions of Devin’s movements and charming in their deliveries. Briana Packen’s Ms. Hidey the Hermit Crab provides the show with its crabby character that is in need of learning something about herself that subsequently gives the play its moral and happy ending. All the performances are precise and energetic, occasionally spilling out into the audience, giving showy and shy kids alike their chance to dance and enjoy their moment in the spot light.

All aspects about the production are professional and family-friendly. Christopher Reiner composes all the original music and lyrics, which are catchy and fun. The scenic design by Jeri Batzdorff is bright and colorful, as are the costumes, also created internally by Limecat. In the world of children’s theater, it is always a plus if the production is entertaining not only for the children, but the adults accompanying them. This is a quality that Limecat can boast.

This Los Angeles transfer has brought out everything that has been entertaining its West Coast kiddies since 2002 and New York children’s theater is all the better for it. - C. Jefferson Thom

The Goldfish Twins Swim the Big Blue Sea! is playing Sundays at noon at Actor’s Temple Theatre, 339 West 47 St., NY NY, through Jan. 31, 2010.

cj_thom

Mr. Thom lives in New York City and walks dogs, writes plays, and loves dissecting pop culture.

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