Classic characters that have stood the test of time from your parents' childhood to that of your children will come to life in Modesto next weekend.
Modesto Performing Arts stages a children's production of author A.A. Milne's "The House at Pooh Corner" on April 6 at the Gallo Center for the Arts. The story is the second book penned by Milne about the famed Hundred Acre Woods, a little boy named Christopher Robin and his menagerie of beloved furry friends most importantly one honey-loving silly old bear named Winnie the Pooh.
MPA director Paul Tischer said the theater company staged the production about 10 years ago and he felt like it was time to bring the show back.
"It just hadn't been done in a long time," he said. "All of the children should know the Pooh character and be delighted (in seeing) a live stage version."
The book was the sequel to Milne's original story and tells the tale of a search for a house for Eyeore, the cantankerous donkey in the Milne repertoire.
It also touches on the idea that Christopher Robin is growing up and beginning a new phase in his life: school.
The animals learn that their young friend is being sent away, which makes them scared, Tischer explained. They decide to run away along with Christopher Robin, but the boy then realizes school is too important.
Tischer said children who come to the show should understand that the MPA production is not the Disney-like "Winnie the Pooh" that they may be used to.
"Disney does as Disney does, and kind of reinterprets the characters," he said. "... The big difference is this is not animated, you don't get the animated kind of movement. It's more a people-oriented type show, it's more intimate."
Local actors, both adults and children, make up the cast some as old as 70, he said.
Tischer said the show is geared to second-graders and up, and isn't a good fit for younger children. "It tends to be somewhat of a talky show," he said. "I don't think young children will be able to focus on the show for the little under an hour that it plays."
The biggest highlight for the little ones? Tischer said that comes after the show's conclusion, when the actors, still in character, will appear in the theater lobby to meet and greet the audience.
WHAT: "The House at Pooh Corner"
WHEN: 2 p.m. April 6
WHERE: Foster Family Theater, Gallo Center for the Arts, 1000 I St., Modesto
CALL: (209) 338-2100