|BANNER ELK, N.C. — Relationships can be difficult to navigate, especially those between parents and children, and even more particularly between fathers and sons. Lees-McRae Theatre Arts presents the story of one such fraught relationship with the musical Big Fish Feb. 22–25.
Big Fish tells the story of Edward Bloom, a husband, father and travelling salesman, who tells big stories about his life—stories so big and fantastical that his son Will has trouble telling fact from fiction.
“I think we all like to exaggerate a little to make our lives seem a bit more exciting, but Edward takes it to such an extreme that it comes between him and his son,” said Big Fish Director, Dr.Michael Hannah, associate professor of theatre arts at the college. “His stories are wildly entertaining but eventually Will becomes frustrated, thinking that he really doesn’t know his father.”
Edward tells his son tall tales about meeting a swamp witch, befriending a giant from a cave, kissing a mermaid, and working in a circus for years just to meet his future wife. Later, as his life is coming to an end, his stories become particularly meaningful to Will. Will is about to become a father himself and wants desperately to understand why Edward told all his stories.
“We see Edward embellish his life to make him appear to be a ‘big fish’ in a small pond, but we eventually see how all his stories have at least some basis in fact and how each of the wildly interesting characters he claims to have met are based on real people,” Hannah said. “The musical starts with Edward telling Will to ‘Be the Hero’ of his own stories, and we then see how Edward had become the hero of his own adventures.”
The production team for Big Fish includes Kathy Den-Bleyker Thomas as musical director, Danielle Curtis as scenic designer, Gabe Vanover as costume designer, Casey Duke as lighting designer, Scott Koenig as the sound designer, Kellyn Hawley as stage manager and Katie Birks-Kilman as assistant stage manager.
The cast includes Logan Bryant as Edward Bloom, Taylor Noll as Sandra Bloom, Zion Bright as Will, Novita Hardy as the Witch, Sabrina Becker as Jenny Hill, Sierra Beane as Josephine, Jakob Sanchez as Karl/Dr. Bennett, Chloe Adam as Amos, DeVon Thomas as Don Price, Sarah Wilson as Zacky Price, Alice Gomez as Young Will, and Anna Parrish as the mermaid/nurse.
Big Fish runs Thursday–Saturday, Feb. 22–24, at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Feb. 25, at 2 p.m. in Hayes Auditorium and Broyhill Theatre on the campus of Lees-McRae.
Tickets, which are available at the door or at lmc.edu/theatreshows, are $12 for adults and $5 for students.
For more information, visit the theatre arts website at www.lmc.edu/theatreshows.