Sunday, January 9, 2011

Berenstain Bears Bare All; Leventhal-Sidman Jewish Community Center, Newton, MA

Guest Blogger: Kami Lewis Levin
 Leventhal-Sidman Jewish Community Center 
333 Nahanton Street
Newton, MA

I grew up in performing arts magnet schools.  I danced, my brother sang and played guiter, and my sister was in the theatre.  (Go on.  Say with an obnoxious British accent.)  Performing is in my blood.  And so, I want to raise my children to love artistic endeavors.  So far, so good.  Sydney, Liji and Seth have formed a Sunday morning rock band that plays the likes of Frere Jacques in their particular punk style.  And, we have an awesome art table that the kids sit at and draw on for hours.  But we haven't done much in the way of theater-going, so when Seth noticed that the Berenstain Bears were performing at the Newton J.C.C., we were all over it.

It turns out, the J.C.C. actually has children's theater performances quite regularly through their Magic Ark Performance Series.  Who knew?  (Probably you, but not me...)  For us, the Berenstain Bears was a perfect match because of late, Sydney has been quite obsessed with that beary crew.  
And, I'd like to think he was pretty psyched for some alone time with me. 
The show was sold out, as most J.C.C. shows are, so Seth was brilliant to purchase our tickets online in advance.
There were mats set up in the "orchestra" section so kids could sit nice and close.  Risers with chairs filled up the house and this house was packed to the gills with laughing, bear-loving folk between the ages of 2 and 82.  The set, costumes, singing and dancing combined to produce high-quality children's theater.  The plot was a mish-mash of three different Berenstain Bears stories, two of which Sydney and I practically knew by heart.  The hour long production was a perfect outing for a cold, gray, winter's day.