Summer Theatre of New Canaan Presents: Treasure Island

Chicago theatre group Bros Do Prose have re-imagined this Treasure Island classic novel. Two brilliant actors perform with high-energy creative storytelling with audience engagement. Everyday items are creatively integrated into the storytelling to the everyone’s delight. The Bros bring exuberance, athleticism, suspense, humor and empathy as we journey along with Young Tim Hawkins who discovers a great pirate’s treasure map. We meet the infamous pirate Long John Silver, his crew of cut throats and all the colorful characters throughout the book.

Magic in the Air: Summer Theatre of New Canaan’s ‘PIPPIN’ a Fabulous Mixture of Riotous Fun and Deep Introspection

My first ever trip to a Summer Theatre of New Canaan production began with a mouth-watering picnic from Walter Stewart’s Market, savored on a park bench among the roses in the New Canaan Beautification League’s Center School Bell garden, listening to the buzz of bees in the clover and the orchestra warming up inside the tent across the road. Excitement filled the air as the crowds began to arrive for the opening night of the Summer Theatre’s bright, bold, hilarious rendition of the musical ‘PIPPIN’ Saturday night. ‘PIPPIN’, for the uninitiated, is the almost entirely fictional story of Charlemagne’s eponymous son, searching for something to give his life meaning. He flits from education to war, to rule, unable to find fulfilment. 

But Pippin is also a play within a play, drawing on the traditions of absurdist theater, with characters routinely breaking the fourth wall and speaking directly to the audience, highlighting the artifice of the magical world of theater, and emphasizing that Pippin is not the same person as the young man playing Pippin—a distinction that becomes more and more important as the show goes on and Pippin (or the man playing him) begins to understand what truly gives life meaning. 

Though set in the 7th Century, ‘PIPPIN’ deals with distinctly modern themes—the dark side of religion, futility of war, complexity and diversity of sexuality, and the desperate search for meaning in an age that provides little in the way of profundity.  

Co-Directed by Allegra and Christian Libonati, and under the artistic direction of Melody Libonati, the show leaned into the theme of magic—the magic of storytelling, the magic of the theater, and the pursuit of the ineffable ‘magical’ answer to life’s questions. The costumes were an eclectic mix of sheer, gauzy fabrics, bare chests and spandex leggings, giving the show an air reminiscent of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.”