The new musical will tour throughout the East Coast this spring, including a May 11 performance for New York City school students at Manhattan's Town Hall. Following a summer hiatus, the production will launch a full national tour after Labor Day running through June 2011.
Producer Murphy stated, "I am honored to bring the beloved Berenstain Bears to life on stage. This heart-warming musical will give a new generation of young readers a chance to fall in love with these characters, just as I did when I was a child. Our talented creative team has done a marvelous job in adapting these stories and their important life lessons into an entertaining family musical. I am looking forward to seeing this production thrive in the educational touring market for many years to come."
Directed by Peter Flynn (Two Rooms, Junie B. Jones) and choreographed by Dev Janki (Zanna, Don't!), the cast features Deonna Bouye as Lizzie, Courtney Daniels as Mama, Matt Densky as Brother, Liz Froio as Sister, Rob Grippa as Freddy and Joe Thomas as Papa.
Adapted from the classic children's books by Stan and Jan Berenstain, The Berenstain Bears in Family Matters, the Musical, according to press notes, "brings everyone's favorite bear family to musical life. As always, Bear Country is not without its complications: Papa Bear can't stop eating junk food, Brother Bear's grades are slipping, and Sister Bear still has a lot to learn about talking to strangers. Thankfully, we can always depend on Mama Bear and her loving patience to help set things right." The musical features an original score by Michael Borton and a book by Borton and Michael Slade.
The production also features musical direction by Christopher D. Littlefield, scenic design by Luke Hegel-Cantarella, costume design by Lora LaVon and props design by Jessica Nelson. Jason Weixelman stage manages. The musical is booked by TheatreworksUSA; for more information visit www.berenstainbearslive.com.