Davenport Junior Theatre presents "Treasure Island"


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Posted Online: Feb. 14, 2013, 12:33 pm
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By Jonathan Turner, jturner@qconline.com

As America's second oldest children's theater, DavenportJunior Theatre now is presenting the 1883 pirate classic "Treasure Island" for the first time.

"When deciding what shows to do this season, we knew we wanted an adventure," Daniel Sheridan, DJT artistic director, said this week. "It struck me that 'Treasure Island' hadnever been performed by DJT. After reading many versions of the show, we finallysettled on a great adaptation by Rex Stephenson."

The show, set in a late 19th-century single-room school, is brought to life by theimaginations of the kids in the show and in the audience, Mr. Sheridan said. The school room becomesan adventure on the high seas.

Founded in 1951, Davenport Junior Theatre is the second-oldest children's theater in the U.S. Classes and camps are offered year-round in theater and dance tostudents ages 3 to 18.

"Treasure Island" is part of the DJT Mainstage Series, which hires professionals indesign and direction to work with the kids. One of those professionals is TomTaylor, the show's director.

"It's a clever adaptation," Mr. Taylor said. "You get a little youthful fun mixed withthe dangerous adventure you expect from its well-known title. It's quite an arc."

A graduate of the University of Iowa, Mr. Taylor has directed 10-minute plays and readings of original works in Iowa City, but this is his first time atthe helm of a full-scale production.He has appeared as an actor inproductions at Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse, the QC Theatre Workshop (most recently seen in "Private Eyes") and NewGround Theatre.

"I'm having a blast," said Sam Jones, senior at Assumption High School and one ofthe leads in "Treasure Island." "Tom is so passionate about the play and really forcesus to think about our characters. You can tell he is an actor too."

"I'm blown away by the kids' professionalism and willingness to try anything," Mr.Taylor said. "Their work and dedication tops most adults I know. It is an honor tolead them."

DJT presents the 70-minute adventure Saturday at1 and 4 p.m., Sunday at 2 p.m., and the same times on Saturday, Feb. 23 and Sunday, Feb. 24. Tickets are$5 for anyone 3 years and older.

For more information, visit DavenportJuniorTheatre.org.




















 



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  Today is Sunday, April 20, the 110th day of 2014. There are 255 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: The attention of contractors is called to proposals for building a magazine. The building is to be erected on the south side of the island, above the railroad, nearly opposite Sinnit's ice houses.
1889 -- 125 years ago: Ladies patent leather tip shoes were selling for $3 at the M & K store, and men's spring overcoats were advertised at $7.50.
1914 -- 100 years ago: Fred Feuchter, of Davenport, was elected president of the Tri-City Post Office Clerks club, and Joe Goldsmith, of Rock Island, was named secretary treasurer.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Mass vaccination of more than 1,600 employed of the Rock Island Arsenal has been ordered by Col. Norman Ramsey after a 13-year-old daughter of the Arsenal manager became ill with smallpox.
1964 -- 50 years ago: The 1964 Scout-O-Rama of the Sac-Fox Council of Boy Scouts closed a two-day session last evening at the Rock Island Armory with 5,000 paid attendance.
1989 -- 25 years ago: "From the horse and buggy days ... to this" said Mercer County Sheriff Marvin Thirtyacre, waving his hand to indicate the sheriff's department facilities at the new $1.5 million Mercer County Jail in Aledo.




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