Do you have a little drama king or queen that is ready for the theater but a little too wiggly to sit through a full production of Shakespeare? There are plenty of shows (even some interactive) in the city starring marionettes, princesses and even some Broadway performers that will keep kids engaged and entertained the whole performance. Here are our picks for the best places around town to catch a show that will foster a life-long appreciation for the theatre, wiggly kids included.
photo: Faery Hunt via Facebook
Kids of all ages will love this interactive show full of sweet songs, talking (and yelling) back at performers, and comedy that keeps kids giggling the whole way through. Beautiful fairies mesmerize little ones while themes like forgiveness, kindness, and respect take center stage for the older ones. Faery Hunt also hosts magical tea parties for kiddos wanting to gather their friends and get dressed up in their favorite fairytale inspired costumes.
Our Performance Picks: A Faery Hunt Adventure, Sept. 9th at Crestwood Hills Park and A Faery Hunt Magic at Sherwood Forest, Sept. 15h at Corriganville Park in Simi Valley.
Cost: $12.50–$25.00 per ticket depending on location and event. Kids 23 months and under are free. $40 per person to reserve a seat at the Fairy Tea Party.
Where: Various parks around the city.
photo: Bob Baker Marionette Theater via Facebook
Bob Baker Marionette Theater
A source of family entertainment for over 50 years! The original shows produced here are brimming with color and fantastic puppetry. Expect the kids to be enchanted as they watch the puppets up close in action. From the beautifully crafted marionettes to the exceptionally talented puppeteers, you won’t see anything like this anywhere else.
Our Performance Picks: Enchanted Toy Shop is every kid’s dream as they watch a toy store come to life. Originally staged as Toyland Review in 1963, this whimsical production runs now through mid-Sept. with multiple performances during the week. Check back for their holiday events as we hear there’s a special Halloween show in Oct. with skeletons and ghosts and the Holiday Spectacular in Nov. and Dec.
Cost: $15 per ticket. Kids 2 and under are free.
1345 W. First St.
photo: Morgan-Wixson Theater via Facebook
The Santa Monica Theatre Guild at the Morgan-Wixson Theatre is a non-profit volunteer community theatre that offers a varied and enriching theater experience with an emphasis on cultural diversity. Mainstage performances are more traditionally produced (by and for adults) but the Theatre’s Youth Education/Entertainment Series (Y.E.S.) brings together participants ranging in age from 8—18, who are committed to engaging youth audiences through their work. What child doesn’t love seeing other kids running the show?
Our Performance Picks: The Y.E.S. upcoming season 2018-2019 season will see productions of Winnie The Pooh Feb. 2019 and James and the Giant Peach Mar.—Apr. 2019.
Cost: $20 per adult, $15 per child 12 and under
2627 Pico Blvd.
photo: Theatre West via Yelp
Storybook Theatre has been a part of Theatre West company since 1984, and they feature age-appropriate, interactive musical theater that’s perfect for kids ages 3—9. What we love most is watching these talented professional actors put on a great show while interacting with little ones.
Our Performance Picks: The whole family will love the musical retelling of Snow White from Oct. 20th, 2018 to Jan. 2019, in which the kids in the audience become the dwarves. You can also schedule birthday parties immediately following the Sat. show where kids get to celebrate and perform on stage!
Cost: $15 per adult; $12 per child, kids under 2 are free.
3333 Cahuenga Blvd. West
photo: Christine B. via Yelp
Located in the heart of Beverly Hills, The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts (The Wallis) is a beautiful space to get your theatre on. Do you have a budding playwright or storyteller on your hands? Submit your child’s story for a chance to see it come to life on stage. This musical sketch comedy (recommended for ages 5 and up) proves that kids should not only be seen but heard!
Our Performance Picks: We love Story Pirates Live; a fun, creative show written by local kids and performed by professional improv comedians (Patton Oswalt took the stage earlier this year). Toddlers and waddlers want in on the action? Be sure to check out the website for information on Story Pirates, a toddler-friendly version of Story Pirates Live.
Cost: Story Pirates is free; Story Pirates Live is $25
9390 N. Santa Monica Blvd.
photo: Creating Arts Company via Facebook
Creating Arts Company
This one-of-a-kind company caters their high-quality shows to specific age groups so that even the wee ones can take part. Broadway and off-Broadway performers star in these kid-centric shows. “Twinkle Theatre” is designed to accommodate the youngest theater-goers, perfect for babies and toddlers up to age 5. The “Mini Musicals and Pint-size Plays,” are for kids age 3 and up, where audience heckling and cheering are encouraged. For older kids age 7 and up, the “Junior Broadway” shows feature interactive songs on a grander scale.
Our Performance Picks: Peter Pan and Cinderella are playing now through the end of Aug. at The Pico (formerly Pico Playhouse).
Cost: $15; $30 for reserved seating
10508 W Pico Blvd.
photo: Glendale Center Theatre via Facebook
Glendale Centre Theatre
This intimate theater boasts a cozy atmosphere meant for kids to dance along to performances. There isn’t a bad seat in the house so even tiny tikes will be able to catch all the action!
Our Performance Picks: For older kids, Mary Poppins is running now until the end of Aug. For younger children, check out Red Riding Hood on stage now through Nov. 10th.
Cost: $12.50 per ticket
324 N. Orange Street
photo: Nine O’Clock Players via Facebook
Nine O’Clock Players
All the Nine O’Clock Players shows are produced just for kids at the Assistance League of Los Angeles Theatre for Children. This company performs for all school groups but especially for at-risk students, ensuring every child in the city experiences live theater. Seeing a show at the Nine O’Clock Players is the perfect way to support local theater and have a fun day out.
Our Performace Picks: Check-out Oz running from Nov. to Dec. 2018.
Cost: $15; $8 per ticket for school groups.
1367 N. St. Andrews Pl.
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—Elena Wurlitzer & Janelle Connor