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"Big Bear Hug" Live Musical Theatre

Story by Nicholas Oldland
Musical adapted and directed by Cody Goeppner and Selena Muller

A Project ACORN event

Time:  12:00 noon to 12:30 and 1:30 to 2:00

FFF 2017 Big Bear HugSince July 16, children have been participating in high energy, fun-filled, Sunday-afternoon theater workshops learning the fundamentals of singing, acting, and dancing.  Led by Forest park graduates and siblings Cody Goeppner and Selena Muller, they participated in a range of activities including theater games, personal coaching, and creating props, costumes, and sets.  The workshops culminated in the preparation of a fun, original, musical adaptation written by Cody and Selena featuring the children’s story, “Big Bear Hug”, by Nicholas Oldland—a tale about a bear who loves to give big hugs to everything, including creatures bears are known to eat!  Going through the forest as a real tree hugger, he encounters a tough situation he must fix.  Join them to find out what the bear does to solve his problem and keep giving big bear hugs!

Last year one of the big hits for the children at the Folk Fest was the musical adaptation of "Ferdinand the Bull (The Musical)" led by Kris Lasher, Leah Robling, and Deb Abell.  The play played a major role in the eventual public mural art painted by muralist Lisa Marie Thalhammer on her cousin Keith Fritz's building at 1440 Main.  Coincidentally, a major animated film by Blue Sky Productions and 20th Century Fox adapted from the classic children's story and simply titled Ferdinand is set for release on December 15.  The Project ACORN and Folk Fest committees are grateful that Cody and Selena are leading another original theatre performance for this year's festival.

Cody recently moved back to his hometown, Ferdinand, to manage his family’s business, Muller True Value Hardware.  He spent the last five years professionally performing and directing Broadway-style productions in Kansas City, MO.  His sister, Selena, has most recently managed an organic horse farm in upstate New York. Selena has performed in several productions in leading and supporting roles. This fall, she is pursuing studies in equestrian arts.  Both are excited to be involved in this endeavor promoting the arts in the community.

Ferdinand's Project ACORN is an all-volunteer, all-ages, community outreach program--standing for Art, Community, Originality, Rhythm, and Nature--that grew out of the spirit of the Ferdinand Folk Festival.  Each season community-minded citizens offer 15 free workshops, hikes, documentary film nights, discussion groups, theatrical events, field trips, classes, musical instrument-making classes, concerts, and more.  So far, in the first 15 months of the program, 74 events have been offered by dozens of area enthusiasts, reaching hundreds of people. Stay tuned for the exciting announcement of the 15 autumn offerings in the coming weeks. For more information about Ferdinand's Project ACORN, visit https://www.facebook.com/ferdinandprojectacorn/.

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