Tags Posts tagged with "Theatre Three"

Theatre Three

By Heidi Sutton

With the temperatures projected to reach into the 90s for the next few days, it’s time for parents to search for fun indoor activities for their children. May I suggest a visit to Theatre Three to see the adorable show Goldilocks and the Showbiz Bears.

Written by Jeffrey Sanzel and Kevin Story,  the musical is loosely based on the classic bedtime story with several twists and turns along the way as well as the introduction of a noteworthy superhero and a lesson in safety. With a clever script, lovable characters, song and dance, it is the perfect way to spend a hot summer afternoon.

We first meet Papa Bear, Mama Bear and Baby Bear, show biz bears who have retired from the circus and are now living in a cottage in the woods. It’s the first of the month and the banker, Billy de Goat Gruff, has come to collect the rent money, which they don’t have. The grouchy goat gives them until the end of the day or they will be kicked out. While their porridge is cooling down, the bears decide to go for a walk to think of ways to come up with the rent.

In the meantime, Goldilocks, a Campfire Bluebird Pioneer Scout Girl who lives with her grandmother Granny Locks, sets off to her cousin’s house to deliver cookies. She ends up at the cottage of the three bears by mistake and lets herself in. Just like the fairy tale, Goldilocks tastes the three bowls of porridge, sits in the three chairs and tries out the three beds, choosing Baby Bear’s bed in which to take a nap because it is “just right.”

When Granny Locks realizes that Goldilocks has not arrived at her destination, she seeks the help of local forest ranger Wolf Hunter to find the missing girl. They arrive at the cottage of the three bears just as Baby Bear realizes that “someone’s been sleeping in my bed, and she’s still there!” Luckily the bears are friendly — they even know Granny Locks from their circus days when she was Eloise the trapeze artist.

But the banker still wants his rent money, so the group puts on a show to help young people learn about safety to raise the funds. Soon all the children in the audience are learning about the importance of staying safe and that “strangers can mean danger — so don’t talk to strangers.”

Directed by Jeffrey Sanzel, the seven member adult cast does a wonderful job conveying the story. Cassidy Rose O’Brien, complete with a blond curly wig that bounces when she walks, is the perfect Goldilocks, confident and brave. Jason Furnari embraces the role of villain Billy de Goat Gruff and runs with it, with a masterful performance  reminiscent of Barnaby in Babes in Toyland, as he makes his rounds to collect the rent from fairy tale characters including Henny Penny and the witch living in the Gingerbread House. The long cape and horns coming out of his hat is a nice touch.

Liam Marsigliano shines as superhero Wolf Hunter, Forest Ranger, who’s “ready to help when there is danger.” Steven Uihlein, Jillian Sharpe and Kiernan Urso in the roles of Papa Bear, Mama Bear and Baby Bear are three of the nicest showbiz bears you’d ever hope to meet and Ginger Dalton as Granny Locks is warm and welcoming. Excellent performances all around.

Expert lighting by Steven Uihlein and costumes by Jason Allyn, from the furry ears and feet of the three bears to the impressive forest ranger uniform, tie it all together for a wonderful afternoon at the theater. This show only comes around every five years so don’t miss it! Meet the cast in the lobby after the show for keepsake photos.

Theatre Three, 412 Main St., Port Jefferson presents Goldilocks and the Show Biz Bears on Fridays, July 14, 21 and 28 and Saturdays, July 15, 22 and 29. All shows start at 11 a.m. Children’s theater continues with Alice’s Most Decidedly Unusual Adventures in Wonderland from Aug. 4 to 12 and Kooky Spooky Halloween from Oct. 7 to 21. Tickets are $12 per person. To order, call 631-928-9100 or visit www.theatrethree.com.

Theatre Three, 412 Man St., Port Jefferson will hold auditions for strong singers/actors/dancers ages 16 and older for the musical The Prom on Sunday, July 9 at 7 p.m., and Monday, July 17, at 7 p.m. Prepare 32 bars from the song of your choice and bring sheet music in the proper key. Accompanist provided. You may sing from the score. Be prepared to dance. Bring a headshot/resume if available. Rehearsals begin in late July. Performances will  be held from Sept. 16 to Oct. 21. For full details visit www.theatrethree.com/auditions.html. 631-928-9100

By Heidi Sutton

Theatre Three closes its 2022-2023 children’s theater season with a most fitting choice, an original musical retelling of the  timeless fairytale Cinderella.

With book by Douglas Quattrock with Jeffrey Sanzel and music and lyrics by Quattrock, the rags-to-riches story combines Charles Perrault’s classic story with Mark Twain’s The Prince & the Pauper with lots of hilarious twists and turns along the way.

Charles Perrault (Steven Uihlein) serves as narrator as well as “squire to the sire” and transports audiences to the palace of King Charming (Jason Furnari) who wishes for his son Prince Charming (Sean Amato) to get married and take over the kingdom so he can retire. He decides to host a royal ball and invites all eligible maidens.

The squire delivers the invitations to the home of Cinderella (Danielle Pafundi) who is forced to cook and clean for her stepmother Lady Jaclyn (Louisa Bikowski) and stepsisters Gwendolyn (Kaitlyn Jehle) and Madeline (Samantha Fierro) and be at their beck and call. When Cinderella asks if she can go to the ball, her stepmother tells her she has to do all her chores first, including washing the cat (do they even have a cat?), but we all know how that turns out. 

Left behind while the meanies go to the ball, Cinderella is visited by her fairy godmother (“I don’t mean to be rude but where have you been?!”), Angelica (Heather Van Velsor), who uses her magic to whip up a beautiful dress and carriage and sends Cinderella on her way.

Meanwhile, the prince hatches a plan to switch places with the squire in hopes of meeting a girl who “really likes me for me.” Things go haywire at the ball, thanks to the spoiled stepsisters, and it ends before Cinderella can get there. When she finally arrives, Cinderella is greeted by a squire (the prince) who asks her to dance because “the band is paid till 1 a.m.” Will she  accept his invitation and waltz the night away? Will they live happily ever after?

Directed by Jeffrey Sanzel, the lively show is perfectly executed with a clever script and all of the wonderful scenes we have come to love overflowing with singing, dancing and lots of magic.

Each actor has his/her chance to shine with solos and duets. Accompanied on piano by Douglas J. Quattrock with choreography by Sari Feldman, the songs are sweet and endearing theawith special mention to “Hey There, Charming,” “Please, Mother, Please!” and “If the Shoe Fits,” “A Girl Like Me (and a Boy Like You)” and “Here in Your Arms.”

The costumes, designed by the uber-talented Jason Allyn, are exquisite, especially Cinderella’s dress which received gasps from the audience when it was first seen, and the lighting and special effects are simply magical.

If you’re looking for something to do with the kids this weekend, Theatre Three’s Cinderella fits the “shoe” perfectly. Costumes are encouraged. Meet the cast in the lobby after the show for a keepsake photo.

Theatre Three, 412 Main St., Port Jefferson presents Cinderella through June 17 with a sensory sensitive performance on June 4 at 11 a.m. All seats are $10. For more information or to order, call the box office at 631-928-9100 or visit www.theatrethree.com.

By Rita J. Egan

It was Theatre Three’s opening night of Something Rotten! on Saturday, May 20, and the audience was treated to an entertaining and energetic night full of laughter.

With book by John O’Farrell and Karey Kirkpatrick and music and lyrics by Karey and Wayne Kirkpatrick, Something Rotten! takes audience members back in time to the late 16th century where William Shakespeare is so adored that he’s treated like a modern-day rock star. Struggling writers Nick and Nigel Bottom, who head up a theater troupe, dream of the same success but can’t seem to create a play that will capture people’s attention until Nick consults with a soothsayer named Nostradamus. 

The soothsayer looks into the future and finds that something called a musical will be popular one day. A later encounter finds Nick asking Nostradamus what Shakespeare’s future successes will be so that the Bottom brothers can use the ideas in the present. The result is Nick creating Omelette: The Musical despite his brother’s objections.

The Broadway musical opened on the Great White Way in 2015 and ran until early 2017. The production was nominated for 10 Tony Awards, including Best Musical, and Christian Borle won the Best Featured Actor in a Musical award for his portrayal of William Shakespeare. 

Theatre Three’s Something Rotten! proves that there are no small parts as well as the importance of talented actors in each role, including the ensemble. Throughout the musical, it was apparent that everyone involved was giving it their all, creating a night of sensational entertainment. Director Jeffrey Sanzel has chosen a talented cast and masterfully directs the more than two dozen actors.

The production is filled with a few upbeat tunes, but the showstopping number is “A Musical.” Featured in Act I, the whole cast appears on stage singing and dancing. The number cleverly pokes fun at musicals and includes nods to Les Miserables, Annie, A Chorus Line and more. At the end of the song, the applause on opening night seemed to go on for more than a minute, and rightfully so, as each and every person involved in Something Rotten! deserved the accolades.

Heading up the cast is Ryan Nolin, a convincing Nick Bottom at the end of his rope trying to provide for his family and create a hit. He and Dennis Setteducati, who plays Nostradamus, sound fantastic on their leads during “A Musical” and play up the clever lines to the hilt.

Andrew Boza, as the naive Nigel Bottom, captures the sweetness of the young poet and writer. He and Danielle Pafundi, delightful as Portia, are the perfect match to play star-crossed lovers, especially during the song “I Love the Way.”

Christine Boehm as Nick’s wife, Bea, is a treat to watch as the character has her mind set on proving, even with mishaps, that a woman is more than capable of doing whatever a man does. Her rendition of “Right Hand Man” is also a highlight of the show.

Evan Teich, as Shakespeare, captures the cockiness of the celebrated star while still delivering the right amount of silliness. Jim Sluder as Brother Jeremiah and Angelo DiBiase as Shylock seamlessly add to the jokes and hijinks.

Choreographers Sari Feldman and Josie McSwane have created high-energy dances. The cast members look like they are having so much fun that audience members may want to join them onstage. The use of tap dancing and a kickline in “A Musical,” as well as a few other numbers, is absolutely delightful.

Theatre Three’s orchestra led by Jeffrey Hoffman sounded fantastic as always, and the costumes by Chakira Doherty perfectly captured the time period.

During the song “A Musical,” the line “What could be more amazing than a musical with song and dance and sweet romance,” is sung. The cast and crew of Theatre Three’s Something Rotten! understand this and embrace every aspect of this genre. Audience members on opening night enjoyed a fun evening out on the town, and the standing ovation at the end of the production was well deserved.

Theatre Three, 412 Main St., Port Jefferson presents Something Rotten! through June 24. Tickets are $35, $28 seniors and students, $20 children ages 5 to 12. For tickets or more information, call 631-928-9100 or visit www.theatrethree.com.

By Heidi Sutton

You know its officially Spring when Peter Rabbit, Benjamin Bunny, Flopsy, Mopsy, Cotton-Tail, Mrs. Rabbit and the McGregors arrive at Theatre Three in Port Jefferson for The Adventures of Peter Rabbit. The  adorable show opened last week for spring break and runs through April 29.

Written by Jeffrey Sanzel and the late Brent Erlanson, the original musical is loosely based on one of the best-selling books of all time, The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter, and features all of the beloved characters in the story.

The audience is whisked away to the countryside home of Mrs. Rabbit and her four bunnies who live next to Mr. and Mrs. McGregor who spend the day tending to their pride and joy — their garden. 

While Flopsy, Mopsy and Cotton-Tail listen to their mother by staying inside and doing their chores, Peter Rabbit and his cousin Benjamin Bunny sneak out to steal from their neighbor’s garden again and again to satisfy their insatiable appetite for lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, parsley and string beans. The constant marauding finally wears the farmer’s patience thin and he plots his revenge.

Directed by Steven Uihlein, the cast of 8 is excellent and exemplifies the magic of live theater. Sean Amato and Steven Uihlein take on the characters of Peter and Benjamin, two comedic roles that provide quite a workout as they run through the theater to escape the “mean as a bear” farmer.

Samantha Fierro, Danielle Pafundi and Courtney Gilmore as Flopsy, Mopsy and Cotton-Tail spend most of their time looking for their wayward brother so he won’t get in trouble by their patient mother (Elizabeth Ladd) and often ask the audience if they have seen him. (“He’s right behind you!”)

Peter and Benjamin seem to be especially naughty and persistent this year and audiences will sympathize with the McGregors, wonderfully played by Liam Marsigliano and Alanna Rose Henriquez. 

With choreography by Sari Feldman, the musical numbers, accompanied on piano by Douglas Quattrock, are terrific, with special mention to “One More Time Around,”  “Run, Peter, Run!” and the hip hop number, “Peter’s Socks.” The final number incorporates all of the songs in a super mega-mix extravaganza.

In a brilliant move, the show takes advantage of the three sets of doors from the current mainstage production, Pride @ Prejudice, which, when opened, always reveals a surprise. Costumes by Jason Allyn are absolutely charming and wait until you see the lighting and special effects!

Souvenir bunnies in various colors will be sold before the show and during intermission and the entire cast will be in the lobby after the show for a meet-and-greet and photos.

Theatre Three, 412 Main St. Port Jefferson presents The Adventures of Peter Rabbit through April 29 with a special sensory sensitive performance on April 16 at 11 a.m. Children’s theater continues with Cinderella from May 27 to June 1, and Goldilocks & the Showbiz Bears from July 7 to 29. All seats are $10. To order, call 631-928-9100 or visit www.theatrethree.com. 

Photo courtesy of Theatre Three

Theatre Three, 412 Main St., Port Jefferson kicks off spring with The Adventures of Peter Rabbit from April 5 to 29 with a sensory sensitive performance on April 16 at 11 a.m. Join Peter, Flopsy, Mopsy, Cotton-Tail, Mrs. Rabbit, Benjamin Bunny and the McGregors in this delightful adaption suggested by the characters created by Beatrix Potter, a Theatre Three tradition for spring break. All seats are $10. To order, call 631-928-9100 or visit www.theatrethree.com.

Robert E. Hansen

Save the date! Psychic medium, author and lecturer Robert E. Hansen returns to Theatre Three, 412 Main St., Port Jefferson on Friday, March 31 at 7 p.m. Join Hansen as he takes you on a journey through the other side of the veil. Messages of love will be randomly demonstrated to the audience. Tickets are $35 per person. To order, call 631-928-9100 or visit www.theatrethree.com.

Pixabay photo

Internet fraud, a worsening cybercrime phenomenon, has reached downtown Port Jefferson.

Through various tactics, online scam artists have successfully targeted storefronts and events throughout Port Jefferson, scoring hundreds of dollars in profits. 

During the 4th annual ice festival in late January, scammers sold eight fake tickets for a mac ‘n’ cheese crawl organized by the Greater Port Jefferson Chamber of Commerce. On the day of the event, victims presented their fraudulent tickets.

The tickets “looked very official,” said Barbara Ransome, the chamber’s director of operations. However, when chamber staff asked those presenting these scam tickets when they had purchased them, their response revealed that something was out of place.

“They said, ‘We got them two days ago,’ and that’s when I realized this was a scam because we had been sold out … for at least a week and a half,” Ransome said, adding that the popularity of the event created an opening for scam artists. “My speculation is that this person saw that these tickets were sold out, saw that people were looking for them and created this whole fraud situation.”

At Theatre Three on Main, a similar practice has gained traction. Although the theater sells tickets at $35 per seat, online ticket scammers have capitalized by selling back-row seats at enormous markups. 

Douglas Quattrock, the theater’s director of development and artistic associate, reported one such incident where a couple spent nearly 10 times the going rate. “We had a couple that paid $672 for a pair of tickets,” he said.

Although only “a handful” of theatergoers have fallen prey to these ticket scams at Theatre Three, Quattrock considered the practice disruptive to operations.

“Being a smaller not-for-profit, we try to keep our prices very family oriented,” he said. However, he added that “scammers see this market as very attractive.”

But online scams are not limited to ticket sales. Jena Turner owns the Port Jeff-based gift shop Breathe, which offers nontraditional healing remedies and psychic readings. 

In an interview, Turner reported that multiple phony social media accounts have emerged, using her photos and business name to solicit payments from unsuspecting patrons. 

“Right now, I know that there are five accounts that stole my photos and are pretending to be me,” she said. 

Social engineering

“There are standard social engineering tactics, such as giving the victim a sense of urgency or taking advantage of their appeal to authority.”

— Nick Nikiforakis

Nick Nikiforakis, associate professor in the Department of Computer Science at Stony Brook University, said internet fraud is becoming a growing concern for small business sectors, which are increasingly vulnerable to malicious cyber activities. 

He contends that online criminals have shifted their sights on smaller boutique organizations because large corporations are investing more resources into cybersecurity systems. 

“Effectively, you have cybercriminals who are customizing their attacks toward small businesses,” he said. 

Turner’s case, according to Nikiforakis, represents a common social engineering scenario.

A social engineer “makes an online account for a company with a brick-and-mortar presence and then tries to take the recognizable name and the good faith that the business has built,” the associate professor said. 

He added, “They are targeting online users, pretending to be the person running this business,” tricking their victims “to send them money, divulge information or in some way get people to participate in a scam.”

A downtown dilemma

Turner said she has reported her digital imposters but has received no relief in removing these scam accounts from the Instagram platform. 

“I had reported it to Instagram several times — and by several, I can say probably more than 20,” she said. “Instagram hasn’t done anything about it.”

Nikiforakis noted that there are considerable technical limitations for social media companies in policing social engineering activities. While they could theoretically verify with storefront owners whenever a platform is created in their name, online scammers often find creative ways to circumvent such safeguards.

“Things can be done, but this is inherently a cat-and-mouse game,” he said. Social engineers “are not attacking a security vulnerability. … They are abusing people’s faith and trust in institutions and recognizable brands.”

Lacking assistance from Big Tech, Turner said she took matters into her own hands, creating a video in which she wrote out her authentic social media handle by hand.

“I made that video, and I just keep reposting it on my story and on my Facebook so that people aren’t falling for it,” she said. “That’s been really helpful.”

But, she added, “We have over 8,000 followers, so not everyone has seen the video. Unfortunately, the scam is still ongoing.”

To respond to the number of ticket scam incidents, Theatre Three similarly released a statement on its website condemning third-party ticket vendors. “The only place to buy tickets from us should be www.theatrethree.com,” Quattrock said.

Still, he encouraged patrons to remain on guard for potentially inflated ticket prices and to approach online transactions cautiously. 

For those who may suspect a ticketing scam, he implored them to call the theater directly before completing the transaction.

“If it looks suspicious to you, just call the theater and verify that they’re on the right website,” he said.

As online fraud persists throughout the local area, businesses and customers are not without recourse. Nikiforakis indicates that awareness of the typical social engineering strategies can help users protect themselves from participating in online scams.

“There are standard social engineering tactics, such as giving the victim a sense of urgency or taking advantage of their appeal to authority,” he said. “For both patrons and companies, by actively resisting this, you can slow down and potentially defend yourself against an attack.”

The award-winning documentayr A House Made of Splinters will be screened at John F. Kennedy Middle School on March 20.

By Tara Mae 

Documentaries are artistic passion put into practice. They require the fervor and drive not only of subjects and crew but also of those who seek to share their stories. 

The Port Jefferson Documentary Series (PJDS) has been honoring and matching such moxie since 2005 and advances the plot this season with the seven films on its spring roster. Held at 7 p.m. on every Monday in March, from the 6th to 27th; April 10 and 17; and May 22, each showing is followed by a Q&A session featuring either the director or producer of the project. 

Emceed by Tom Needham, executive producer and host of “Sounds of Film” on WUSB, the Series is a labor of love for all involved, giving both filmmakers and festival organizers the opportunity to revisit what initially drew them to these stories and share it with an attentive public.  

“I like seeing the films again. With most of these films, we have been working on arranging the screenings for at least 3 months. I really do enjoy being in the audience, seeing the films again, thinking about them for the Q&A, and noticing what the audience reacts to. And then, meeting the documentarians and hearing their stories is one of the most exciting parts of the whole process,” said PJDS co-director Lyn Boland. 

This season starts with Dr. Tony Fauci, which explores the professional and private life of a man striving not to be blinded by the spotlight as he does his job. 

Immediate Family highlights the harmonies of five star session musicians whose notes, if not their names, are famous.

A House Made of Splinters chronicles the efforts of intrepid social workers on the front lines of the war in Eastern Ukraine as they endeavor to create an orphanage oasis for children displaced by war and woe.

I Am Not  follows the journey of Oren Levy, a young adopted Israeli man who travels back to Guatemala in search of his identity. 

Lift illuminates the invisible story of homelessness in America through the experiences of a group of young homeless and home-insecure ballet dancers who are selected to study their craft at the New York Theater Ballet.

Bobi Wine: The People’s President traces the career evolution of a man from musician to politician as he heralds the opposition to Uganda’s 35-year regime. 

Lastly, Unfinished Business offers an inside look at the creation and legacy of the WNBA, as exemplified through the champion New York Liberty’s dramatic 2021 season.

“We try to balance it between serious and entertaining documentaries,” explained PJDS co-director Wendy Feinberg.

Screenings, held either at Theatre Three in Port Jefferson or John F. Kennedy Middle School in Port Jefferson Station, are arranged and organized by PJDS’s co-directors: Boland, Feinberg, and Barbara Sverd. Known as the “Film Ladies,” they are dedicated both to spotlighting the art form of documentary filmmaking and the often lesser-known stories that they champion.  

“When I choose a film to be reviewed by the film board, I feel it must tell a story, have an emotional connection and appeal to a general audience. When I view a documentary for the first time, regardless of its subject matter, I want to feel like I am taking a class and learning something new,” Sverd said. “The greatest pleasure is sharing this experience with our audience and having the director, producer or someone from the film there for the Q&A to enhance the learning experience.” 

Such an opportunity for more informed dialogue is part of the appeal for the documentarians as well; it acts as an avenue for deeper understanding between audience and artist.  

“A smaller series or festival offers a unique and intimate connection with those who come to a theater and watch your film. It’s not about the publicity, or agents, or distributors. It brings us, as filmmakers, back to the fundamental reason we made this work: to listen for an answer back,” said David Peterson, director of Lift. 

In addition to personal, there are also practical reasons that the PJDS and other such events are vital to the endurance of documentaries, a genre that generally has far less star power and thus less funding than its cinema siblings. 

“These films would never have a chance if it was not for festivals and documentary series…to get distribution is really hard. That is where PJDS and other festivals can help.  You have to show distributors that you have an audience,” said Denny Tedesco, director and executive producer of Immediate Family.

After each viewing, audience members are given the opportunity to rate the documentary: Excellent, Very Good, Good, or Poor. At the end of the season, the votes are tallied and the Audience Award winner is announced. 

The members of the Film Board, which in addition to Boland, Feinberg, and Sverd, includes Honey Katz, Lynn, and Lorie Rothstein, then chip in money to donate to an organization of the winning director’s choosing. 

Sponsored the Greater Port Jefferson-Northern Brookhaven Arts Council, Maggio Environmental, Port Jeff Storage, Inc., and Covati and Janhsen, CPAs, with funding from Suffolk County, PJDS is seeking volunteers to assist with screenings, marketing, and social media. 

Theatre Three is located at 412 Main Street, Port Jefferson. John F. Kennedy Middle School is located at 200 Jayne Blvd, Port Jefferson Station.

A season pass for all seven documentaries is $56; single tickets are $10 online or at the door. To purchase passes, tickets, or for more information, visit www.portjeffdocumentaryseries.com.

A scene from ‘Lift.’ Photo courtesy of PJDS
Film Schedule:

■ The season begins with a screening of Dr. Tony Fauci at Theatre Three on March 6. This intimate film chronicles Fauci at home, in his office and in the corridors of power as he battles the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the political onslaught that upends his life and calls into question his 50-year career as the United States of America’s leading advocate for public health. Guest speaker is Director Mark Mannucci. Sponsored by Danfords Hotel & Marina and The Waterview at Port Jefferson Country Club.

Immediate Family will be screened at Theatre Three on March 13. If you listen to 1970s pop music, you’ve undoubtedly heard these guys play, but do you know their names? The documentary highlights five talented men—Danny “Kootch” Kortchmar, Leland Sklar, Russ Kunkel, Waddy Wachtel and Steve Postell—who shunned the spotlight for themselves, yet enjoyed decades of success as session musicians on iconic tracks. Guest speaker is Director Denny Tedesco. Sponsored by Danfords Hotel & Marina and The Waterview at Port Jefferson Country Club and the Long Island Music and Entertainment Hall of Fame in Stony Brook.

Next up is A House Made of Splinters at JFK Middle School on March 20. As the war in Eastern Ukraine takes a heavy toll on poor families living near the frontlines, a small group of strong-willed social workers works tirelessly in a special kind of orphanage to create an almost magical safe space for kids to live in while the state decides the fate of the child and family. The film is nominated for a 2023 Oscar in the documentary film category. Guest speaker is Director Simon Lereng Wilmont via pre-recorded Zoom.

I Am Not will be screened at JFK Middle School on March 27. Oren Levy, a young Israeli man, who is an adopted child with Asperger’s, faces challenges adapting. Suddenly, his life changes with the help of the camera, which becomes an extraordinary therapy tool assisting him on a long journey which takes Oren and his family to Guatemala in search of his identity. Guest speaker via Live Zoom will be Ehud Levy, Oren’s father and subject in film. Sponsored by North Shore Jewish Center in Port Jefferson Station and Temple Isaiah in Stony Brook.

The season continues on April 10 at Theatre Three with Lift which shines a spotlight on the invisible story of homelessness in America through the eyes of a group of young homeless and home-insecure ballet dancers in New York City. The story centers around ballet dancer and mentor Steven Melendez, who was a seven-year-old boy living in a Bronx homeless shelter who had his life turned around when he was the recipient of the New York Theater Ballet (NYTB) Project LIFT’s generosity. Guest speakers will be Director David Petersen and Steven Melendez, Principal Dancer & Artistic Director at the New York Theatre Ballet and subject in the film.

Bobi Wine: The People’s President heads to JFK Middle School on April 17. First-time co-directors Christopher Sharp and journalist Moses Bwayo tell the story of Bobi Wine, the musician-turned-politician leading the opposition to the 35-year regime in Uganda. Withstanding arrests, torture, and violence from the government, Bobi Wine and his wife Barbie risk their own lives and the lives of their children to lead their country towards freedom. Bobi Wine: The People’s President is a brave exposition of an authoritarian government that highlights the power of documentary journalism. The film won the Hamptons Film Festival 2022 Best Documentary Audience Award. Guest speakers via Zoom will be Co-Directors Christopher Sharp and Moses Bwayo. 

Unfinished Business, the final film of the season, heads to Theatre Three on May 22. An intimate look at the formation and legacy of the WNBA, and its flagship team, the New York Liberty’s, dramatic 2021 season, as they play for acceptance, respect, and the future of basketball. The film is named for a song “Unfinished Business” written for the New York Liberty basketball team in 2001 by Joan Jett, a Liberty super-fan who appears in the film. Guest speaker is Director Alison Klayman.

By Heidi Sutton

Fans of the classic movie The Wizard of Oz will fall in love with Theatre Three’s current children’s production, Dorothy’s Adventures in Oz. Adapted from the stories of L. Frank Baum, the show, written by Jeffrey Sanzel and Douglas J. Quattrock, features an original score, a clever script, and wonderful cast — Samantha Fierro, Danielle Pafundi, Steven Uihlein, Sean Amato, C.J. Russo, Louisa Bikowski, Stephanie Moreau, Liam Marsigliano and Kaitlyn Jehle with a special appearance by Shay Francis Feldman — who bring this magical story to life. 

Dorothy Gale, chief editor of her high school newspaper, the Baum Bugle, is busy putting the paper to bed when a fierce storm blows in and knocks her to the ground. When she wakes up, she finds herself in Munchkinland.  Her news stand has landed on the Wicked Witch of the East causing her demise, much to the delight of the Munchkins. 

When the scary Wicked Witch of the West shows up, Dorothy is protected by Glinda the Good Witch who gives her those famous ruby slippers and sends her down the Yellow Brick Road to the Emerald City to find the Wizard of Oz who can help her get home. Along her journey, Dorothy meets a Scarecrow who wants a brain, a Tinman who yearns for a heart, and a Lion who longs for courage. The three join her on her quest and the adventure begins.

Directed by Jeffrey Sanzel, all of the iconic scenes are here, from the talking apple trees, the enchanted poppies, to meeting the Wizard in the Emerald City, the flying monkeys, the Witch’s castle, the Winkies and the melting scene (what a world!). A nice touch is the flawless scene changes — each time Dorothy meets a new friend, they walk through the aisles of the theater (the yellow brick road) as the next scene is set up. The costumes by Jason Allyn are just perfect and the special effects are top notch. And did I mention there is a special surprise with four legs and a tail? 

In the end, the show reminds us to be true to our hearts and that there truly is no place like home. Don’t miss this one. Stop by the lobby on your way out for a group photo with the cast.

Theatre Three, 412 Main St., Port Jefferson presents Dorothy’s Adventures in Oz through March 18. Running time is 1 hour and 20 minutes with one intermission. Children’s theater continues with The Adventures of Peter Rabbit from April 5 to 29 and Cinderella from May 27 to June 17. All seats are $10. To order, call 631-928-9100 or visit www.theatrethree.com.