The Jungle Book, Rudyard Kipling’s classic tale of the little boy raised in the jungle by wolves, will come to life on the Otamatea Repertory Theatre stage in Maungaturoto, in August.
Director and musical director, Peter and Maura Flower, say they are excited to be using an adaptation of the play that is making its world premier in Nottingham, in the United Kingdom, in July.
“We will be the second theatre in the world to stage this version of the show,” Maura says.
“Audiences seem to enjoy classic tales – Alice in Wonderland and Peter Pan were popular. We thought this was in the same league and, of course, it has splendid costuming and make-up possibilities.
“We had been hunting for an adaptation to produce and couldn’t find one we liked. I came across some of B.B. Cooper’s music on YouTube. I got in touch with her and learned that there was a new adaptation, commissioned by Toby Hulse, and she sent me the script. It is a lot more suitable for our audiences so was quite serendipitous.”
Maura says Otamatea has a wealth of talented young singers and she is not envisaging any problems casting the lead role of Mowgli.
“Peter and I both teach singing and we run a Youth Theatre programme at the theatre in the Christmas holidays, so we have a great bunch of up-and-coming talent. This year’s Youth Theatre involved about 70 youngsters.”
Altogether, there are 15 songs in the show and the production will involve 50 to 60 people on stage and backstage.
Auditions are being held for the show now, with performances from August 4 to 20.