Home News Local News Youth perform ‘Willy Wonka Jr.’ this weekend

Youth perform ‘Willy Wonka Jr.’ this weekend

Sarah Sanchez and Aubrey Sanchez are among the youngest students of Neverland Theatre Company’s program. They are playing Oompa Loompas in “Willy Wonka Jr.” (Submitted Photo)

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Neverland Theatre Company and The Studio+ in association with the Roswell Community Little Theatre (RCLT) are presenting Roald Dahl’s “Willy Wonka Jr.”

While the adult actors of RCLT have their production of “Willy Wonka” in the evenings, the children of Neverland Theatre Company — ages 4 to 17 — will perform the junior version on Sept. 29 at 2 p.m. and on Sept. 30 at 6 p.m. at the Roswell Community Little Theatre.

RCLT’s full-version “Willy Wonka” shows are on Sept. 28 and 29 at 7:30 p.m. and on Sept. 30 at 2 p.m.

The production of “Willy Wonka Jr.” is in the hands of director Dominic Batista. Music director is Mark Salas and in charge of choreography is Ada Palacios.

“Instead of using the background of RCLT, projections will be used, Dusty Dean is in charge of it,” assistant director Will Cass said. “He did the same when we did ‘Something Wicked This Way comes.’”

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Asked how the junior version differs from the adult version, Cass said, “It’s shorter. It’s amazing how close the two parallel each other and of course we are working with little kids. Our Charlie is 6 years old and he can’t even read yet. So he has to learn the entire part by memorizing it. He is a darling. He is one of the Graves’ family kids. His name is Emmett Graves.”

Cass, as assistant director “Willy Wonka Jr.,” supports both Batista and Salas. “I help with the music and the staging,” he said.

Also performing is Soren Thorsted as Willy Wonka; Samantha Thorsted in a double role as the Candy Man and Grandpa George; Rose Thorsted in a double role as Mrs. Gloop and Grandma Josephina; Sebastian Bills as Grandpa Joe; Samson Velasquez as James and an Oompa Loompa; Sarah Sanchez as Matilda and an Oompa Loompa; Emma Hargrave as Phineous Trout; Avery Lawless as Augusta Gloop and an Oompa Loompa; Mason Deen as Veruca Salt; Shaylee O’Dwyer as Ms. Salt; Ellie Graves as Violet Beauregarde; Berlyn Dean as Mrs. Beauregarde; Jada Wilson as Ms. Teavee; Aubrey Sanchez as squirrel; and the other Oompa Loompas are Jason Graff, Taryn Davis and Ellie Graves.

“It will be a fascinating and entertaining performance,” Salas said.

Tickets are available at the door at RCLT, 1717 S. Union Ave., before each show. For more information, email info@neverlandtheatrecompany.org, contact them through their Facebook page or call The Studio+ at 575-623-5155.