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Axis Theatre brings “Frog Belly Rat Bone” to VDPAC

March 2 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm

The Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre presents Axis Theatre’s Frog Belly Rat Bone as part of its SPOTLIGHT 2023-24 Kids Series production.

The Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre presents Axis Theatre’s Frog Belly Rat Bone as part of its SPOTLIGHT 2023-24 Kids Series production.

The March 2 matinée show incorporates beautifully handcrafted puppets and an original pop/rock musical score,

Adapted from the Candlewick Press book by Timothy Basil Ering, the show is narrated by two garbage collectors who tell the story of a special boy with a singular wish—to find a treasure. The boy’s discovery of a rusty tin box sets off an adventure in Cementland, leading to the creation of “Frog Belly Rat Bone”—a guard made of wet smelly socks, mouldy old pillow stuffing, and scraggly wire. His patience pays off as Cementland transforms from a dark junk pile into a vibrant and colourful haven.

“I love how Axis stayed nicely close to my original story, with of course, their own witty and fun sense of humour written into the character’s lines, personalities, and interactions,” says Ering.

Through the character of Frog Belly, the production subtly teaches the importance of patience. The show imparts a valuable lesson on transforming challenges into beauty with inventive scenes, music, sound effects, puppetry, and visual elements with its set and props. Kids and adults alike can expect an ‘edutaining’ experience from this performance.

This family-friendly production is an immersive experience for anyone three years of age and above. Young audience members are encouraged to become part of the story, fostering a sense of participation, wonder and creativity and will get the chance to engage with the puppets up close.

Chris McGregor, the adaptation’s director & playwright, has a Theatre Directing Masters degree from the University of British Columbia. Teaching physical theatre and directing over 60 productions across Canada, McGregor has won four Jessie Richardson Theatre Awards and received three Ovation Award nominations. He has adapted children’s books such as Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch (part of VDPAC’s past SPOTLIGHT Kids Series), Frog Belly Rat Bone and Cry, Heart, But Never Break into puppet shows.

Paige Fraser, who plays The Boy/Trash Collector, is an award-winning performer who has toured nationally and worked in Arts Club’s Elf The Musical. Steffanie Davis as Frog Belly Rat Bone/Trash Collector is an actor, singer, dancer, and model based in Vancouver; and Tom Picket, a seasoned Vancouver theatre actor, narrator, and film/TV performer, is the voice of the show’s narrator.

“Come on an amazing journey with two trash collectors as they sing and dance their way through the many junk piles of Cement Land! There they’ll take you on an adventure with Frog Belly Rat Bone and friends to discover a wonderful treasure for all to enjoy,” says McGregor.

Axis Theatre is well-known for its enriching productions for theatres and schools alike, engaging kids with immersive narratives. The company’s productions have been recognized with 21 Jessie Richardson Awards, a Betty Mitchell Award, and a Drama Desk Nomination, creating original physical theatre productions for the young and young at heart.



Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre
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Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre
3800 - 33rd Street
Vernon, British Columbia V1T 5T6 Canada
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