Playhouse Off the Hill Tour Begins with a Flash Sept. 30

THE LAST FIREFLY Helps Children Find the Courage Within

PIP_The Last Firefly

Promotional photo by Tony Arrasmith/Arrasmith & Associates.

CINCINNATI—Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park’s popular Off the Hill touring series returns Sept. 30 with THE LAST FIREFLY. The fantastical story combining Japanese fairy tales and folklore runs through Oct. 29 at community centers and schools across the region, from Burlington to Price Hill to Mariemont and at Memorial Hall in Over-the-Rhine.

THE LAST FIREFLY is the mythical story of Boom, the son of Thunder, who sets out to discover his true self. After his stepfather forces Boom from his home, he begins a search for his real father, which takes him on a journey of self-discovery, where he must courageously battle forces of nature.

“This show is a fun adventure that will engage the imaginations of children and parents alike,” says DaunielleTraditionally, kabuki theatre explores themes of good and evil through nature and spirituality. Characters include Lightning, Monkey,

Noted playwright Naomi Iizuka’s script is an evocative and kabuki-influenced play geared towards young audiences. Kabuki theatre is a Japanese form of stage drama that is characterized by elaborate costumes, lively storytelling, music, movement, and dancing.

Rasmussen, director of education and community engagement at the Playhouse.Tree and Spider, and Boom must also battle fierce elements of nature. These fantastical characteristics call for an especially innovative approach to set design, props, and costume, all of which are crafted by Playhouse artisans.

THE LAST FIREFLY is performed by members of the 2017-18 Bruce E. Coyle Acting Intern Company, under the direction of Playhouse Associate Artist Timothy Douglas. As Associate Artist, Douglas has directed many productions for the Marx and Shelterhouse stages, including Jitney, Buzzer, Clybourne Park, The North Pool, Mothers and Sons and the world premiere of Safe House. THE LAST FIREFLY marks his first production for the Playhouse in which he directs young and emerging artists for children’s theatre.

“We are very fortunate to have a director of Timothy’s caliber working with us on the first tour of the season,” says Rasmussen. “I can’t think of a better craftsman and storyteller to put together the story of Boom’s journey.”

Other upcoming Off the Hill touring plays include PINOCCHIO, Jan. 21 to Feb. 11, 2018. The much-loved tale about a wooden puppet who dreams of becoming a real boy is packed with magical characters, cartwheels, circus antics and dollops of fun for the whole family starting at age 6 and up. RAPUNZEL, recommended for ages 4 and up, premieres April 5, 2018, and runs to May 20. Young Rapunzel lives in a tower, curious about the outside until she meets a local boy who finally gives her the courage to be free.

Find a full list of public performances here.

Directed by Timothy Douglas and choreographed by Daunielle Rasmussen, the cast includes Hannah Jones, Marco Adriel Munoz, Psacoya Guinn & JT Stocks.

Off the Hill is supported by The Robert and Adele Schiff Family Foundation and John C. Griswold Foundation.

The Playhouse is supported by the generosity of more than 40,000 contributors to the ArtsWave Community Campaign. The Ohio Arts Council helps fund the Playhouse with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans. The Playhouse also receives funding from the Shubert Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts.

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