Henry Ford College Theater Arts will present throughout November Dinosaurus!, a live stage play featuring 3D animated dinosaurs and live actors, starting tomorrow at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the Adray Auditorium.
The dinosaur images appear to be next to the actors when they are projected on an 18-foot-high-35-feet-wide screen (covering the entire width of the Adray Auditorium stage). The show is intended for children in grades 1-5.
Henry Ford College describes the play’s story as “There’s a place down below where the dinosaurs live. Looking for oil underneath Wisconsin, two geologists stumble on a lost world of dinosaurs.
“Are the humans the heroes? No: this story is told from the viewpoint of the dinosaurs, who must struggle to deal with the intrusion of these pushy, noisy, troublemaking little humans. The dinosaurs try everything to get rid of the intruders, until finally history repeats itself with a solution that at first seems tragic—but just wait.
“A wonderful show for kids, filled with humor, fantastic visual delights, and valuable lessons on diversity and understanding others,” it concluded.
The public performances of Dinosaurus! take place Nov. 1-2, 7-9, 14-16 and 21-23; at 2 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, and at 7 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays; in the theater inside MacKenzie Fine Arts Center, located on the Dearborn campus at 5101 Evergreen Road. Furthermore, reservations are now being taken for 10 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. matinees for schools (Nov. 10-14, 17-21 and 26-27). Dr. George Popovich, director of theater for Henry Ford College, said that any public or private school can bring its students to see Dinosaurus!, but the production is intended for elementary school students.
The two actors starring in the production are a student and a faculty member of Henry Ford College, he said, Michael Cochran and Gerry Dzuiblinski, with other students voicing the animated dinosaur characters. When the Henry Ford Community College Technology Investment Fund Committee gave a $150,000 grant to the Virtual Theatricality Lab in 2012 to do a show, Popovich said it was decided to produce the Dinosaurus! script written by Edward Mast and Lenore Bensinger, which has been performed all over the United States.
The Henry Ford College Theatricality Lab has been used in only three shows over the pasts 10 years, he said, because “it takes us a long time to start a show from scratch.” High-definition digital 3D projection, audio and show control systems will be combined with special effects (like wind, smoke, mist, SFX lighting and a surround-sound system).
The tickets for Dinosaurus! can be purchased online now at http://theatre.hfcc.edu. The price is $5 for children under 12, and $8 for everybody else. Though the show is supposed to be best suitable for elementary school children grades 1-5, Popovich said that the $8 price for everybody else accompanying them is still “a good price to see a show with this level of animation.”
Teachers and chaperons who bring schoolchildren to the Dinosaurus! matinees as part of the Theatre For Young Audiences Program will be admitted free, with $4 being charged per-student. Since the program started, 5000-6000 students have been bused yearly by their schools to Henry Ford College to watch the Theatre for Young Audiences productions.
To make a reservation request for their students, elementary educators are being asked to visit http://vtl.hfcc.edu/node/873, email George Popovich at email@example.com, or call (313) 845-6478. They can visit vtl.hfcc.edu/productions/dinosaurs for detailed information.
Anyone with further questions on Dinosaurus! can call (313) 845-6478.