EarlyStages, the children's program of Houston's Stages Repertory Theatre, will present Vilnius Theatre Lele, a Lithuanian puppet troupe, in their show A Circus is a Circus, July 27-31.
Circus, Lele's most popular children's play, is the tale of Goody Goody the frog, and his adventures at the circus. There he meets Klounas, a clown and befriends an elephant, a lion and a cuckoo, another visitor, like himself, who wants nothing more than to hatch its egg.
Celebrating their 41st anniversary in 1999, the Vilnius Theatre Lele ("lele" meaning doll or puppet) practice traditional Lithuanian puppeteering begun in the 18th century. Comprising 17 professional actors, the troupe perform 550 shows annually in their two theatres in Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania. They've also toured around the world to England, Austria, Denmark, Ethiopia, India, Russia, Algiers and Poland.
For tickets ($12), call the box office at (713) 52-STAGES. The Stages Repertory Theatre is located at 3201 Allen Parkway. For more information on the Vilnius Theatre Lele, visit the official tour site at javlb.org/culture/lele.html.
Following the Houston engagement, the Vilnius Theatre Lele troupe will do more Texas traveling to Galveston (Strand Theatre, Aug. 1), San Antonio (St. Mary's Hall, Aug. 3-4) and Austin (Aug. 6-8). -- By Christine Ehren