The Art of Learning: A Look at Pollyanna’s THE BIG BOLT

Anyone who has ever watched a young child deeply involved in playing pretend can tell you that even very young children have the will and attention needed to intently focus on a task, topic, or story.  In those moments of intense dramatic play, children learn great life lessons and practice being other people or characters.  By pretending to be others, ultimately, young children learn more about how to be themselves and appreciate the world around them.  That is why it is often said that playing is the serious work of childhood.

No theatre company believes this more than Pollyanna Theatre Company, the only resident company of The Rollins Studio Theatre that is dedicated to the creation and presentation of new plays for young audiences.  All Pollyanna plays are based on the idea that through great pretending comes great learning.  Sometimes that learning is about history or some other curricular matter.  Ultimately, that learning is also about human nature.  And Pollyanna Theatre Company’s newest production, THE BIG BOLT, by award-winning playwright Holly Hepp-Galvan is no exception to that rule.

THE BIG BOLT, which opens on The Rollins Studio Theatre stage on May 9, 2015, is the story of a little girl named Jimmi who is not your typical little girl.  Jimmi loves to build things and is fascinated by the the construction of a huge new building in her neighborhood.  Each day as Jimmi and her dog, Pal, walk by the construction site, the building is taller.  One day as she is leaving the area, a huge bolt rolls out of the building and stops in front of her feet.  While Jimmi knows she should not keep what is not hers, the temptation to take the bolt home is just too strong.  Soon everything in town is falling apart and everything is going wrong.  Could taking just one bolt that doesn’t belong to you really cause all of this trouble?  Focusing on the concept of cause and effect and the consequences of telling a few little lies, THE BIG BOLT gives young children the opportunity to empathize with a protagonist facing the need to tell the truth.  And it gives audiences of all ages the opportunity to laugh at ourselves.

With a cast that features familiar faces that Pollyanna’s audience will recognize (Aaron Alexander, Bethany Harbaugh, Craig Kanne) as well as some new company members (Brian Stewart and Uyen-Anh Dang), THE BIG BOLT will give children and their caregivers plenty to talk about on the way home.  After all, isn’t that what good theatre does?

Sunday, May 10 is a very special day for THE BIG BOLT.  It is Mother’s Day and our Scout Sunday!  All Girl and Boy Scouts are encouraged to purchase their tickets online using discount code SCOUT to receive reduced rate tickets for themselves and their families.  Bring Mom to the theatre for her special day!  Just be sure to wear a piece of your scout gear to the theatre so our ushers will know who you are when you arrive.

Tickets for Holly Hepp-Galvan’s THE BIG BOLT are on sale now through The Long Center Box Office.  Purchase your tickets online using the mobile ticketing option and save even more!  Performances on Sunday, May 10 and May 17 will be followed by a Meet The Cast Party when audience members are encouraged to stay and get to know the theatre artists of Pollyanna Theatre.

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