What do you get when you combine paper, scissors, glue and 200 kids? No, not a mess. In fact, quite far from it.
On January 31, approximately 200 kids ages 4-10 and their parents were treated to a special evening as we presented our annual Kids Night in the ballroom of the Marriott Hotel in downtown Minneapolis. This free event prior to Tuesday’s performance of Disney’s The Lion King, at the Orpheum Theatre through February 12, provided families an opportunity to participate in an African mask workshop whether or not they had tickets to that night’s show.
We partnered with In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre to present a 90-minute workshop on traditional African masks and mask making, followed by the chance for little hands to come up with their own colorful creations. Led by Community Engagement Manager Stacy Lee King and Associate Artist Laurie Witzkowski, the team from In the Heart of the Beast shared the connections between traditional African masks and the current touring production of The Lion King. For example, it is tradition for masks to be worn on top of the head (much how they are worn in the show), and when worn to cover the face the wearer is looked at as a medium for the spirit and loses his or her identity. If you are going to see The Lion King, take note of the moments that characters in the show have their masks fully covering their faces versus the times when we see more of the actor.
Trust Controller Kjirsten Johnson took off her work mask and put on her Mom mask to bring her kids to the event and said, “My kids LOVED the mask making workshop last night. They both wore their masks to school today and Liam even brought his Lion King CD to school.”
Previous Kids Nights have included events with Shrek the Musical, Annie, Disney’s High School Musical, Disney’s and Cameron Mackintosh’s Mary Poppins and the World Premiere of The 101 Dalmatians Musical. Thank you to our partners from the Marriott Hotel and In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre for their support of this popular event. Check out our photo album to get an inside look at what kids created or join our weekly email list to be notified of future Kids Night events.