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Gainesville Theatre Alliance focuses on Peter Pan's life before Neverland in its new play
'Peter and the Starcatcher' to run from April 10-22 at UNG Gainesville campus
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University of North Georgia assistant professor Zechariah Pierce, UNG sophomore David Martin and Brenau University senior Lauren Whitaker rehearse a scene in “Peter and the Starcatcher.”

‘Peter and the Starcatcher’

When: 7:30 p.m. April 11-15 and  April 18-22; 2:30 p.m. April 16 and April 22; preview show 7:30 p.m. April 10

Where: Ed Cabell Theatre, University of North Georgia Gainesville campus, 3820 Mundy Mill Road, Oakwood

Cost: $18-20 adults, $16-18 seniors 65 and older and $12-14 students, depending on seat location; $10 preview show

More info: www.gainesvilletheatrealliance.org or 678-717-3624

Have you ever wondered how Peter becomes Pan?

The Gainesville Theatre Alliance has the answer with its upcoming production of “Peter and the Starcatcher.”

Performances of the Broadway-based show will be at 7:30 p.m. April 11-15 and  April 18-22 and 2:30 p.m. April 16 and April 22 in the Ed Cabell Theatre at the University of North Georgia Gainesville campus. A preview show will be at 7:30 p.m. April 10 at the college at 3820 Mundy Mill Road in Oakwood

Tickets are $18-$20 for adults, $16-$18 for seniors 65 and older and $12-$14 students, depending on seat location. The preview show costs $10.

A group of GTA students along with UNG assistant professor Zechariah Pierce will present the popular show.

“This is a play that was on Broadway. It won a Tony for best play,” said Jim Hammond, GTA production director and artistic and managing director.

He explained the play is about “growing up” and “finding your home.”

“It’s this adventurous, coming-of-age story that serves as a prequel leading us up to the Peter Pan play or novel that we are all familiar with,” he said. “There is no Wendy, because Wendy hasn’t been born yet.”

Instead the play features 13-year-old Molly, who will become Wendy’s mother.

“She winds up befriending an orphan who doesn’t even have a name at this time, and he winds up being given the name Peter,” Hammond said.

Stressing the play is more geared toward adults than children, he said it’s full of adult sensibilities and will move those who come to the performance.

Hammond noted the play is one of his favorite styles of theater, which led to him choosing it.

“It’s … where the actors are in control through the use of their imagination and the audience’s imagination,” he said. “I just love that style of storytelling.”

And when picking the location of the play for such storytelling, the UNG Ed Campbell Theater made a perfect fit.

“One of the things that made it (the play) so successful on Broadway — and we are certainly following the storytelling style of the Broadway production — is that it’s very creative and imaginative in its stage production,” Hammond said.

“(Ed Campbell Theater) is a great venue for this show because it’s so intimate. The audience is within just feet of the actors,” he said. “You’re wanting the audience to feel like they’re in the world of the play.”

Hammond said the play is very funny but bittersweet, all the while capturing the audience’s imagination.

“I think theater is at its best when it taps into the audience’s imagination,” he said. “I think that’s a much more exciting joyride for the audience to take, and this play certainly takes them on that journey.”

For more information, visit www.gainesvilletheatrealliance.org or call 678-717-3624.

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