Little Kit, a new "family musical" about an orphan who joins a circus in Victorian England, will premiere Dec. 18 at the Off-Broadway Vineyard Theatre.
With libretto by Barbara Lynn Krieger and a score by Charles Greenberg, the musical was developed in spring 1997 at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre Center in Waterford, CT as part of the center's inaugural conference on "family theatre." The center hosts annual summer conferences on play writing, musicals, cabaret and puppetry.
Little Kit is based on Emily Arnold McCully's book "Little Kit, or the Industrious Flea Circus Girl." In the story, the 12-year-old disguises herself as a boy, escapes the orphanage and "eventually finds happiness in the most unlikely place."
McCully is the author of the Caldecott Medal-winning "Mirette on the High Wire," which was adapted to the stage as the musical Mirette by Tom Jones and Harvey Schmidt.
Greenberg has composed music for Off-Broadway productions by A.R. Gurney and Sam Shepherd, and Krieger has created several family operas at the Vineyard, notably The Magic Mirrorand The Merry Muldoons. The cast includes Jackie Angelescu, William Ryall, Kirk McDonald, Erin Dilly, Tina Johnson, Steven Ted Beckler, Shara Traub and Robb McKindles.
Performances of Little Kit are Dec. 17, 18, 19 and 22 at 9:30 AM and noon; Dec. 20 and 21 at 12:30 PM and 3 PM; and Dec. 23 at 12:30 PM and 4 PM at the Vineyard Theatre, 309 E. 26th St. For tickets, which are $12, call (212) 353-3874.