The Florida Chautauqua Theatre stage will transform into a princess fairytale with its new production of "Sleeping Beauty."
The play, which marks the end of the spring children's workshop, will star kids from kindergarten to eighth grade with a couple of Chautauqua Theatre veterans.
Derived from the Walt Disney interpretation of Brother's Grimm classic story, "Sleeping Beauty" is more about fun than romance, said Beth Campbell-Work, director of Florida Chautauqua Theatre.
"We have a great group of kids and even a few children's workshop veterans," she added.
Campbell-Work often chooses Walt Disney animated classics for productions for their familiarity and beautiful music. The largest crowds usually come out for such plays, she said.
"We'll be using the regular music from the 1959 movie, which is by Tchaikovsky." she added. "The kids love it too."
The entire show will be cast with children from the workshop — everyone gets a part. As director, Campbell-Work even added a little fairy band to accompany the fairy godmothers.
Playing the role of Maleficent, the antagonist of the film, is Florida Chautauqua Theatre veteran Mary Beth Majors, who was cast as the evil fairy godmother for the first time about seven years ago.
"I love that role," Campbell-Work said. "If I could play Maleficent, I would."
Natalie Allred, another veteran, will play the role of Sleeping Beauty. Allred was also cast in last year's "The Little Mermaid," playing Scuttle.
"She worked her way up from a seagull to a princess," said Campbell-Work with a laugh.
Having former students, or veterans as Campbell-Work calls them, reprise a role or volunteer means a lot.
"We often invite people back," she said. "It's hard to cast a whole show with young children."
Working with young minds is Campbell-Work's favorite part of being involved with the Florida Chautauqua Theatre. The non-profit organization is dedicated to providing children with a fun, cultural outlet.
"The children just blossom under these programs," she said. "I have parents constantly coming back and telling me how their children have gained so much confidence and so many friends."
Tickets to "Sleeping Beauty" help support the theatre which has been entertaining the
"It's a family thing," Campbell-Work said. "Our Sunday matinee is timed perfectly so you won't miss church. My mother loves it and she's 96. She'll be coming to all three shows."