Be Our Guest” is not only a memorable song from Disney’s “Beauty and Beast, Jr.”, but also the invitation extended by the 45 members of the Theatre Palisades Youth (TPY) cast for the public to attend one of the nine scheduled shows, starting this Friday, July 28.
The talent is so deep in Pacific Palisades that director Lara Ganz and musical director Caitlin Tortorici elected to use three different casts to play parts in the magical TPY musical at Pierson Playhouse.
The show is based on the 1994 Broadway production and Disney’s 1991 animated feature film and tells the tale of transformation and tolerance.
A young prince is trapped in the body of a hideous Beast. In order for the spell to be broken, he must learn to love another and earn her love in return. With the help of the castle’s enchanted staff, including a teapot, a candleabra and a mantel clock, Belle and the Beast find friendship and love.
Lyricist Howard Ashman and composer Alan Menken wrote the film’s music, which won Oscars for Best Original Score and Best Original Song for “Beauty and the Beast” in 1992. Two other songs were also nominated: “Be Our Guest” and “Belle.”
Ashman, who additionally served as the film’s executive producer, died eight months before the film’s release, and the film was dedicated to his memory.
The Broadway show was adapted from the film and ran until July 2007, making it Broadway’s tenth-longest running production in history—and now, you can see the Junior version locally at the Pierson, 941 Temescal Canyon Rd.
Playing Belle are Eliza Byrnes, Barrett Eastman and Lexi Sexton. In the role of the Beast are Bella Dixon and Jonny Oscarson. Mrs. Potts is played by Jemma Handler, Amber Havel and Emma Lindgren. Serving as the narrators are Alexandra Abraham, Lexi Raben, Ilianna Brett and Mireille Ganz.
No production would be complete without Gaston (played by Ava Dixon, Nicholas Sartory and Riley Stoler) and Cogsworth, played by Callum Ganz, Safiye Gudil and Kayla Ring.
The character Lumiere will be portrayed by Sophie Herron, Theo King and Sara Samii. Chip will be played by Gazzera Luca Ferro, Jolie Handler and Colin Sexton. Sharing the role of LeFou are Gabriella Abraham, Goldie Massey and Zoe Malayil.
Boche will be played by Ingrid Knap, Rachel Kruglyak and Katie Sievers. Rounding out the cast are Pearl Abrahams, Anna Barker, Scarlett Bocaccio, Clayton Collins, Daniela Contreras, Jillian Leary, Eve Matteson, Chaz Plager, Dylan Port, Spencer Rodman and Zack Wein.
The show, produced by Stephanie Malayil, Michele Sexton and Heather Oscarson, will play Thursday, August 3 at 7 p.m.; Friday, July 28 and August 4 at 7 p.m.; Saturday, July 29 and August 5 at 2 and 5 p.m.; and Sunday, July 30 and August 6 at 2 p.m.
For tickets, call (310) 454-1970 or visit Theatrepalisades.org.