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101 Dalmations take to the stage

By Ashbourne News Telegraph  |  Posted: November 07, 2013

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A PRODUCTION of 101 Dalmations can be spotted at a theatre near Ashbourne next week.

The New Victoria Theatre in Newcastle-Under-Lyme will host a new production of the old children’s classic, written by Dodie Smith in 1956.

The novel has been adapted to the theatre-in-the-round, by the New Vic’s artistic director, with original swing music and live lindy hop dance routines that are performed by a cast of actor-musicians.

Artistic director Theresa Heskins said: “The great thing about theatre-in-the-round is that audiences feel so much a part of the show, and that’s one of the reasons that young people are so gripped by our work.

“Of course as soon as I began work on the production I realised why it’s done so rarely.

“The 100-plus dogs conjured up in the title are only half the story.

“We make puppies grow from minutes old, the Dalmatians adopt a disguise, and of course, they’re aided in their quest by all the dogs of England and some feline friends too.

“I hope audiences will be charmed by the ways we’ve untangled this furball of a problem.”

Brought to life by the same creative team behind the New Vic’s record-breaking A Christmas Carol, Alice in Wonderland and Peter Pan, nearly 25,000 children are expected to see the show.

Ms Heskins added: “It’s so important to me that children’s early experiences of theatre are the best possible, because that will keep people from a wide range of backgrounds coming back to this artform for the rest of their lives.

“In fact, a quarter of the New Vic’s visits each year are by children aged 16 and under – a fact of which we are very proud.”

The show will also involve a cast of 30 young performers who will be joining the team of professionals.

101 Dalmations runs from Saturday, November 23 to Saturday, February 1.

Tickets for the show, which are priced from £14, are available now by calling the New Vic Theatre Box Office on 01782 717962 or by visiting www.newvictheatre.org.uk

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