Whittier Elementary Fifth Grade Students Perform in Disney’s Peter Pan Jr.

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Fifth grade students at Whittier Elementary presented Disney’s Peter Pan Jr. on Wednesday, November 8, and Thursday, November 9.  The 60-minute musical, designed for upper-elementary and middle school aged performers, is based on the play by J.M. Barrie and the 1953 Disney film.

Peter Pan JR. is the story of the boy who wouldn’t grow up and the girl who has to.  After finding his shadow in the Darling family nursery, Peter teaches Wendy, Michael and John how to fly and sweeps them off to Never Land, where they meet Lost Boys, mermaids, Indians and, of course, pirates.  If the children are ever to return home, Peter must defeat Captain Hook with the help of Tinker Bell and her fairy friends.  Peter Pan Jr. features classic songs from the 1953 film such as, You Can Fly!, Following the Leader and The Second Star to the Right as well as songs from the Pirates of the Caribbean ride and the 2008 Disney film Tinker Bell.  This production was licensed through Music Theatre International (MTI) in association with Disney Theatrical Group (DTG).

At Whittier Elementary School, the fifth grade musical is a special project for students because they not only select the musical, but they collaborate with the directors and their peers throughout the entire process.  In preparation for the show, the youngsters helped choreograph musical numbers; contributed staging and acting ideas; designed tickets and posters to advertise the performance; created backdrops, props, and masks; and operated the sound, music, and lighting for the production.

Music teacher Evan McIntyre directed the fifth grade actors and the Whittier Singers.  McIntyre and art teacher Elizabeth Kengeter-Bash led creative design for the production, with the assistance of numerous parent volunteers.