By Heidi Sutton
Children’s theater continues at The John W. Engeman Theater with The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley. The adorable show, based on the first in a series of books by Jeff Brown, follows the adventures of Stanley Lambchop (Daniel Bishop) who lives with his parents (Michael Fasciano and Suzanne Mason) and his brother Arthur (Jae Hughes). His mailman, Mr Cartero (Patrick McCowen) serves as narrator and introduces Stanley as an average 10-year-old kid who has big dreams.
At bedtime, Stanley and his brother see a falling star and make a wish. While Arthur wishes for an A on his science project, Stanley wishes to travel and “do amazing things the world has never seen before.” In the middle of the night a bulletin board above his bed crashes down on him and flattens him like a pancake.
At first, Stanley and his parents are alarmed and take him to Dr. Dan for an evaluation but he is as perplexed (and confused) as they are. When Stanley goes to school, his classmates tie him to a string and fly him like a kite until he gets stuck in a tree. Then Stanley realizes the advantage of his two-dimensional position and, for the price of a stamp, mails himself in a letter to California to visit a friend.
From there he mails himself to Paris and poses as a painting in the Louvre next to Napoleon and Mona Lisa to catch a sneak thief, and then heads to Hawaii to star as a surfboard in a movie. In the end Stanley realizes that home is the best address but will he remain flat forever?
Directed and choreographed by Danny Meglio, the five talented cast members, playing multiple roles, put on a terrific show. The question on everyone’s mind was how a flat character would appear on stage but the clever costume does the trick.
The song and dance numbers are a delight to watch with special mention to Bishop’s solo “I Wish I Were … A Hero,” “The Funny Sunny Side,” “Talent'” with a great soft-shoe number and Hughes’ heartfelt solo, “Arthur’s Letter.”
With the message to look for a little adventure in everything you do, this imaginative and clever show is flat-out fun. Meet, greet and sign autographs with the cast after the show in the lobby. An autograph page is conveniently located at the back of the program.
The John W. Engeman Theater, 250 Main St. Northport presents The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley on Saturdays at 11 a.m. and Sundays at 10:30 a.m. through July 2 with a sensory friendly performance on June 10 at 11 a.m. Up next is Cinderella from July 22 to Aug. 27. All seats are $20. For more information or to order, call 631-261-2900 or visit www.engemantheater.com.