First Stage Theatre Company puts a new musical twist on the 2005 Broadway show Little Women: The Musical, based on the classic Louisa May Alcott novel set in the Civil War. The musical production rolls into its last weekend with shows at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 22 and 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 23.
Based on Alcott’s classic semi-autobiographical novel, it focuses on the four March sisters — brassy, tomboy-like, aspiring writer Jo (Meg Barber), romantic Meg (Sarah Bryan), pretentious Amy (Rileigh Smirl), and kind-hearted Beth (Erica Clonch) — and their beloved Marmee (Tamara Meadows).
The ladies are “home alone” in Concord, Mass., trying to keep things together while the family patriarch is away serving as a Union Army chaplain during the Civil War. Like a year in the life, “Little Women” is intercut with the vignettes in which their lives unfold are several recreations of the melodramatic short stories Jo writes in her attic studio.
Director Mary Smirl said the musical is packed with emotions as the family deals the day-to-day drama and monumental events as their lives turn in the wake of war.
“We have two weddings, the birth of twins, a death and so there is every emotion,” Smirl said. “It is a joyful, beautiful and hopeful story. It takes place within a year, four seasons and it moves quickly. There is not a lot of serious, heavy-duty dialogue.”
Smirl said they picked the coming-of-age musical because of its strong literary and historical relevance.
“When the production committee meets we try to pick things that one the kids will enjoy being a part of and two a show that we can do for the schools,” Smirl said. “This is a classic novel and it is historical as well.”
The shows take place at the Jean Carlo Stephenson Auditorium in Huntington City Hall. Tickets are $12 and $10 students/seniors. Call 304-416-KIDS for more info.