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New musical adaptation of "Jungle Book" to play at BYU Feb. 8-16

A Theatre for Young Audiences production

Brigham Young University’s Theatre for Young Audiences will take a walk on the wild side in a new musical adaptation of Rudyard Kipling’s classic tale “The Jungle Book” Friday, Feb. 8, through Saturday, Feb. 16, at 7:30 p.m. in the Nelke Theatre.

Tickets are $10 or $6 for weeknights and $7 for weekend shows with a BYU or student ID and for children 2 years and older. No performances will be held on Sunday or Monday. Tickets for the dress rehearsals at 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 6 and 7 and matinees at 2 p.m. on Feb. 9 and 16 will be $5. To purchase tickets, visit the Fine Arts Ticket Office, performances.byu.edu or call (801) 422-4322.

Raised by wolves deep in an Indian jungle, Mowgli leads a life of adventure most boys only dream of. The jungle is full of mysterious creatures — madcap monkeys, seductive snakes and one terrifying tiger who vows to drink Mowgli’s blood.

The terrifying tiger is Shere Kahn, the most powerful animal in the jungle. Rather than use her power for good, Shere Kahn turns her back on the Jungle Law in favor of her own version of justice — revenge.

Allison Belnap, who directs the show, came across some lyrics from the song “Watershed” by the Indigo Girls, which she thinks reflects the main theme of the play: “They say it’s never too late, but you don’t get any younger! Well, I better learn how to starve the emptiness and feed the hunger.”

“Our challenge is to learn how to starve the emptiness of revenge and feed the hunger for forgiveness,” Belnap said. “Starve the emptiness of pride and feed the hunger for humility. Starve the emptiness of covering our sins and feed the hunger for repentance. Shere Kahn continually feeds the emptiness and starves the true hunger. And in the end, she loses everything and gains nothing.”

In the BYU production, Zakary Kirkpatrick will play the part of Mowgli, Ashley Leavitt the part of Baloo, Cherish Caldwell the part of Bagheera and Judy Simmons the part of Shere Kahn.

Joining Belnap on the production staff are Korianne Johnson, music director; Chris Hartman, choreographer; Rebecca Hixson, production stage manager; Ward Wright, scenic designer; Mary Haddock, costume designer; and Heidi Doggett, makeup and hair designer.

For more information, call Allison Belnap at (801) 422-6265.

Writer: Marissa Ballantyne

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