Not only is High 5, the arts assistance group which brings high school students to the theatre for only $5, a good cause, but its Oct. 30 benefit will be the first time Seussical will be seen by a paying New York audience. The new musical, which won't begin previews until Nov. 1, stages a special dress rehearsal for the group.
High 5 gets students into theatrical performances like "Boys Don't Cry" star Chloe Sevigny's What the Butler Saw, Romulus Linney's A Lesson Before Dying, Bill Irwin in Samuel Beckett's Texts for Nothing, La Boheme, The Cradle Will Rock, Richard II and Why We Don't Bomb the Amish for $5 per ticket. It also offers cheap admissions to dance events, opera and museums across New York City.
Last year's benefit helped High 5 establish two new programs - Take 5, which allows adults to accompany their students for $5 and Teen Scene, an after performance series where teenagers can talk about the production among themselves and with the artists.
Troubled since it began a pre-Broadway run in Boston, Sesussical has changed its first New York preview date nearly half a dozen times and added "a new pair of eyes" in director-choreographer Rob Marshall. Seussical will open Nov. 30.
Based on Dr. Seuss' enormously popular children's tales, Seussical is set in and around Horton's home, the Jungle of Nool. The Cat in the Hat (David Shiner) is a kind of tour guide. Horton the Elephant (Kevin Chamberlin), Gertrude McFuzz (Janine LaManna), the folks of Whoville, Mayzie La Bird (Michele Pawk), The Lorax, The Grinch (William Ryall), and others sing about home, love, family, loss and imagination — all "the 'thinks' you can think." Tickets for the benefit are $250. For more information and reservations, contact Elizabeth Morris at High 5 Tickets at (212) 750-0555, ext. 204.