Fall Children’s Theater Performances in Lake County

I love live theatre, but admittedly it can be hard to make the trek to Chicago, especially when I’m already trying to juggle a full-time job, long commute, and the hectic schedules of three kids. As soon as my kids were old enough to sit still for at least an hour, I started taking them to see live children’s theatre, in hopes that they would share my passion. So far, it has been working – my oldest, now 19, was involved in theatre throughout his schooling, and my littles (ages 7 and 4) love to put on pretend shows with their stuffed animals.

fall children's theatre lake county

Fortunately, Lake County is home to several wonderful theatres that offer year-round performances for children – all within a short drive! Here are some fall highlights.

The True Story of the 3 little pigs at CLC
Photo Source: CLC Theatre Department on Facebook

The True Story of the Three Little Pigs
Dates/Times
: September 28 & 29, 2017 at 10:00 a.m.; September 30, 2017 at 3:00 p.m.; September 30, 2017 at 7:00 p.m.; October 1, 2017 at 2:00 p.m.
Cost: General Admission $6; School Groups of 10 or more (in advance) $4.
James Lumber Center for the Performing Arts at the College of Lake County
19351 West Washington St., Grayslake | (847) 543-2300
Buy tickets.

There are two sides to every story, and when the Big, Bad Wolf takes the stand in Piggsylvania’s Trial of the Century, he finally gets his say. But can a lone wolf get a fair trial in a corrupt piggy court? And will anyone believe that all the “huffing and puffing” nonsense was just a cover-up for a simple story about a sneeze and a cup of sugar? Enter the jury box and decide the fate of Big ’n Bad in this hysterical musical adaptation of the hit children’s book by Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith.
Synopsis from http://jlcenter.clcillinois.edu. Suitable for grades K-5.

 

Fall Children's Theater
Image source Genesee Theatre website

Puddles Pity Party
Date: Saturday, September 30, 2017
Time: 8:00 p.m.
Cost: $35, $47.50
Genesee Theatre
203 N. Genesee St., Waukegan | (847) 782-2366
Buy tickets.

It was Halloween 2013 when Puddles the Clown teamed up with Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox to record an epic version of Lorde’s hit song “Royals” that instantly went viral. The YouTube video has received over 19 million views and growing. The “Sad Clown with the Golden Voice” has captivated audiences from around the world, building a fan base of more than 209,000 on Facebook.

When he takes the stage, he puts his suitcase down and doesn’t utter a word. When the music starts and you hear that voice for the first time, you’re in disbelief. The tragic clown has a rich, operatic baritone with expressive vulnerability that you wouldn’t expect from a man of his stature. It’s mesmerizing.

As with any Pity Party performance, it’s not all sadness and longing. The set is peppered with a brilliant sense of the absurd, mixing lots of humor with awkward, tender moments.

Since “Royals,” he’s produced several more viral videos, blew away the judges on “America’s Got Talent” and performed all over the world – from Monterey to Melbourne.
Synopsis from http://www.geneseetheatre.com. Suitable for tweens/teens.

Fall Children's Theater
Image source Northbrook Park District website

Elephant and Piggie’s “We Are In a Play!”
Dates: Every Saturday, October 7 through November 11, 2017
Times: 10:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.
Cost: $12
Northbrook Theatre for Young Audiences
33323 Walters Ave., Northbrook | (847) 291-2995
Buy tickets.

A musical experience, from the pages of Mo Willems’ beloved, award-winning, best-selling children’s books. In Elephant & Piggie’s “We Are in a Play!”, an elephant named Gerald and a pig named Piggie are best, best, “bestus” friends, but Gerald worries that something could go wrong that would end their friendship. Piggie is not worried at all. She’s even happier and more excited than usual. That’s because she and Gerald are invited to a party hosted by the Squirrelles, three singing squirrels who love to have a good time. And so begins a day when anything is possible.
Synopsis from http://www.nbparks.org.

Photo Source : Stevenson High SChool Website

The Monster in the Closet
Dates/Times: October 22, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. & 1:00 p.m.
Cost: $7
Stevenson High School Children’s Theater
1 Stevenson Dr, Lincolnshire | (847) 415-4000
Buy Tickets
Murray the monster only wants to play Emily’s new video game. He’s too scared to even think about frightening them. Unfortunately, Murray’s boss expects action.  Emily knows Murray is hiding in her closet so she invites friends over for a sleepover to see if she can capture him.  Appropriate for all ages. Wear your costume and take pictures with the cast and crew afterwards!

 

Fall Children's Theater
Image source James Lumbar Center website

The Scorpions’ Sting
Dates/Times: October 24, 2017 at 10:00 a.m.; October 24, 2017 at 12:00 p.m.; October 25, 2017 at 10:00 a.m.; October 25, 2017 at 12:00 p.m.
Cost: General Admission $6; School Groups of 10 or more (in advance) $4
James Lumber Center for the Performing Arts at the College of Lake County
19351 West Washington St., Grayslake | (847) 543-2300
Buy tickets.

“The Scorpions’ Sting” is an opera for young people that tells an exciting story based on an ancient Egyptian myth. The opera follows a group of archaeology students as they race to save their professor, who was stung by a scorpion. They uncover the Lost Temple of Isis, the Egyptian goddess of healing, and attempt to find a cure within the ancient hieroglyphics. Join us for this musical adventure! Special Q & A with the cast to follow performance. “The Scorpion’s Sting” is a part of the Lyric Opera of Chicago’s Opera in the Neighborhoods program.
Synopsis from http://jlcenter.clcillinois.edu. Suitable for grades 3-6.

Fall Children's Theater
Image source Christian Youth Theater Chicago website

Great American Tall Tales
Dates: November 2-5, 2017
Times: Vary depending on date
Cost: $9
Christian Youth Theater Chicago
Christian Arts Auditorium, 2500 Dowie Memorial Dr., Zion | (847) 516-2298
Buy tickets.

When several young kids stumble into a dusty exhibit during a museum field trip, their adventure comes to life. Together they meet the beloved characters of American folklore – Annie Oakley, Davy Crockett, Pecos Bill, John Henry and more. Through story, dance, and song, they learn more that history is alive and vibrant while discovering that sometimes fact and fiction work together to create unforgettable legends.
Synopsis from https://www.spotlight.org.

Image souce: Metropolis School of the Performing Arts facebook page

G2K Once Upon a Mattress
Dates:
November 9-11, 2017
Times:
Vary depending on date
Cost:
Adults $14 • Children 12 & Under $10
Metropolis School of the Performing Arts
111 W Campbell Street, Arlington Heights | (847) 577-5982 | Buy Tickets.

A clever spin on The Princess and the Pea fairytale, this musical is brimming with memorable songs and loads of humor. Queen Aggravain will allow no one in the kingdom to marry until her son Prince Dauntless is wed. Desperate to marry his own love, Sir Harry ventures out to find a true princess that the Queen will approve of. Harry finds an unlikely candidate in swamp princess Winnifred, but can Winnifred pass the Queen’s impossible test? Recommended for grades 3-8

https://tickets.metropolisarts.com/

Fall Children's Theater
Image source Marriott Theatre website

Sleeping Beauty
Dates: November 10 through December 30, 2017
Times: 10:00 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.
Cost: $17.23
Marriott Theatre for Young Audiences
10 Marriott Drive, Lincolnshire | (847) 634-0200
Buy tickets.

Come visit this colorful kingdom where the vengeful sorceress Magenta places a wicked curse on the beautiful Princess Amber. Only a kiss from her one true love can unlock the spell and wake this Sleeping Beauty. Will Prince Hunter overcome his fears as he scales the mountains, sails the dark sea and battles the dragon to prove his love? Don’t miss out on this captivating and colorful, musical fairy tale. A special one-hour presentation for kids (and parents) of all ages. All performances followed by a question and answer session with the cast.
Synopsis from http://www.marriotttheatre.com.

 

Fall Children's Theater
Image source Northbrook Park District website

Annie Jr.
Dates: November 11, 12 and 18, 2017
Times: 12:30 and 4:00 p.m. (4:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. on November 11.)
Cost: $12
Northbrook Theatre for Young Audiences
33323 Walters Ave., Northbrook | (847) 291-2995
Buy tickets.

Little orphan Annie is determined to find the parents who abandoned her years ago on the doorstep of an orphanage run by the cruel Miss Hannigan. Annie eventually foils Miss Hannigan’s evil machinations, finding a new home and family in billionaire Oliver Warbucks.
Synopsis from http://www.nbparks.org.

Fall Children's Theater
Image source Northbrook Park District website

 

Shrek the Musical Jr.
Dates: December 9 and 10, 2017
Times: 12:30 and 4:00 p.m.
Cost: $12
Northbrook Theatre for Young Audiences
33323 Walters Ave., Northbrook | (847) 291-2995 
Buy tickets.

Once upon a time, in a far-away swamp, there lived an ogre named Shrek. One day, Shrek finds his swamp invaded by banished fairytale misfits who have been cast off by Lord Farquaad, a tiny terror with big ambitions. When Shrek sets off with a wise cracking donkey to confront Farquaad, he’s handed a task – if he rescues feisty princess Fiona, his swamp will be righted. Shrek tries to win Fiona’s love and vanquish Lord Farquaad, but a fairytale wouldn’t be complete without a few twists and turns along the way.
Synopsis from http://www.nbparks.org.

 

Fall Children's Theater
Image source Genesee Theatre website

A Garfield Christmas
Date: Saturday, December 2, 2017
Time: 3:00 p.m.
Cost: $20.50, $28.50, $40.
Genesee Theatre
203 N. Genesee St., Waukegan | (847) 782-2366
Buy tickets.

Everyone’s favorite fictional feline, Garfield, is ready to celebrate the most wonderful time of the year! Coming to you with open arms – because he’s expecting presents – Garfield will brighten your holiday season with his delightful wit, wisdom and of course, his token wise cracks. Yes, he’s a few gifts short of understanding the true meaning of Christmas. But with the help of Jon, Odie and his new holiday friends – Nutcracker, Rag Doll, Teddy Bear and Tree-Top Angel – our witty kitty will quickly get into the Christmas spirit. This lively holiday musical features timeless sing-along favorites, including “Jingle Bells,” “We Wish You a Merry Christmas,” “Deck the Halls” and more. Bring the whole family and join the fun as our silly nap-taking, lasagna-loving fat cat decks the halls with boughs of folly!
Synopsis from http://www.geneseetheatre.com.

 

Which Lake County theatre productions are on your list this fall? Leave us your recommendations in the comments section below.

About Laura Otto 24 Articles
Laura Otto is an associate professor at Mount Mary University in Milwaukee, where she teaches courses in journalism, writing for new media and creative writing. She lives in Vernon Hills with her husband, Matt, and three kids: Cole (19), Maya (7) and Shane (4). When she isn’t grading papers or scrubbing crayon off the walls, she can be found playing Downton Abbey trivia games on Facebook or doodling all over her kids’ homework.

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