Packer's Middle Schoolers brought the classic stories of "Mary Poppins" to life in the Pratt Theater this fall.
Patricia Runcie-Rice, the show's director, shared the following reflection in the program:
Mary Poppins is an icon. Mary Poppins is a book, is a movie, is a musical, is a Barbie Doll, is a wall decal, is a Halloween costume…and of course for this generation, Mary Poppins returned to the silver screen to continue the story. A character created from the mind of author P. L. Travers back in 1934 has become a treasured mainstay in our popular culture and our love of this character unites generations....
Through rehearsals we quickly discovered the magic of Mary Poppins is inherent in the source material. A family is struggling to connect. A father feels like he is failing. A mother feels like she is failing. The children feel alienated and lonely, therefore, they act out. In the hustle and bustle of daily life, they’ve come undone. Mary Poppins steps in to (hopefully) guide them towards a ‘practically perfect’ family. Not one that has the ‘right’ address or the ‘right’ friends, but a family who takes care of one another. Mary Poppins asks the children, ‘Who looks after the fathers when things go wrong?’ Bert helps Jane and Michael discover that there are ‘guardians’ on their roof in the sweeps. The cast talked about how this is a metaphor for all of the people in your life that will be there ‘when you’re low’ and that they will step in just in time to offer a helping hand or a kind word. The cast spoke about how we are all socially obligated to be there, rooting for one another in the good times and the hard times.
The magic of Mary Poppins lives within these 73 students who have worked so hard to make this show come alive. Mary says, ‘anything can happen if you let it.’ Our hope for you this evening is that you sit back, suspend your disbelief, and join us on this journey together as we watch the story of the Banks family unfold. As Mary Poppins might say, ‘If you look past the end of your nose, you may just see something magical.’
See highlights from the show below.
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