Frozen, Jr.

Photo courtesy Jennifer Finetti

Some of the creative and production team members involved in Ghostlight Theatre Ensemble's Performing Arts Youth Academy production of Disney's “Frozen JR.,” surround the Olaf puppet to be used in the show. In the back row, from left to right, are Ashlynn Filippone, Isaiah Mateas, Helen Dixon, Lizzy Phalen, Nancy Torres and Olivia Bustos. In the front row, from left to right, are Kieran Mustafa, Mariah Schafhausen, Kathryn Lopez and Adriana Lopez.

Ghostlight Theatre Ensemble's Performing Arts Youth Academy (PAYA) is thrilled to present Disney’s “Frozen JR.”

Based on the 2018 Broadway musical, “Frozen JR.” brings Elsa, Anna and the magical land of Arendelle to life. A story of true love and acceptance between sisters, it will thaw even the coldest heart. The show features all the memorable songs from the animated film, with music and lyrics by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez, plus five new songs written for the Broadway production.

Directed by Helen Dixon and student director Isaiah Mateas, PAYA is a two-week summer program for children and teens ages 7 to 15. Participants auditioned in April, and the program began July 15. The final session will be held July 26, followed by performances July 27.

“I’m amazed at what we’ve able to accomplish within the span of a two-week summer program,” Dixon said. “We have at outstanding cast. Ghostlight board members are in charge of technical direction, vocal direction, choreography and costume design, all supported by a teen creative team.”

In addition to directing, Dixon has also taken on costume design, and has had her hands full with creating a large Olaf puppet for the show.

“We’ve been so fortunate to have so many community volunteers to help with costumes, not only for “Frozen JR.” but also for our recent production of “HONK!” she said. Ghostlight’s PAYA program launched for the first time in July 2018 with the company’s memorable production of “Seussical Kids,” directed by Mateas.

“Last year, we had a full house for both of our performances, and I’m sure it will be the same (now). We have 42 kids in the cast, all eager to put on a great show for the community,” Mateas said.

The key roles of Anna and Elsa are shared, since the characters are first shown as young children who grow as the story unfolds. Leila Slavic (Young Anna) and Tayah Bell (Young Elsa) begin the show, followed by Alivia Torres (Middle Anna) and Lexi Matthews (Middle Elsa), before the reins are handed off to Aubrey McNabb (Anna) and Sydney Strong (Elsa). Kyle Davidian portrays Kristoff, and Michael Komer appears as Sven, Kristoff’s loyal reindeer. Jacob Gonzalez plays Prince Hans, and Aubrey Pierce plays the beloved role of Olaf, the snowman who longs to enjoy summer weather.

Two back-to-back performances will be held at the theater at Edna Hill, 140 Birch St., in Brentwood, both on Saturday, July 27 – a 2 p.m. matinee, followed by an evening show at 6:30 p.m. Both shows are expected to sell out, so advance purchase is highly recommended.

Tickets are $12 for adults and teens and $8 for children 12 and under. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.ghostlightte.org/main-stage-frozen-jr.html.

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