“Into the Woods” comes to Norton

Cinderella, Rapunzel, Little Red Riding Hood and Jack and the Beanstalk will come together in the UNA Opera Musical Theatre’s production of “Into the Woods.”

The department will perform the musical April 22 at 7:30 p.m. and April 24 at 2 p.m. in Norton Auditorium. Students and community members can buy tickets online at una.edu/music or at the George S. Lindsey box office.

“(The fairy tales) intersect as they meet each other in the woods,” said Music Events Coordinator Carole Maynard. “Each of the characters are on their own journey, but they end up interacting with each other.”

Directors of Opera Musical Theatre Terrance Brown and Tiffany Bostic-Brown will direct the musical.

Maynard said the directors chose this show because most people know about it.

“It’s well-known, which makes it accessible for audiences,” she said. “(The stories are) seen in a new way, but they’re familiar stories. The songs are (also) familiar and relatable.”

Maynard said the show is the original Steven Sondheim Broadway production, so it is not like the 2014 Disney movie.

The main difference is the length of the production, said sophomore Maria Sullivan. With a run time of 2 1/2 hours, the stage version allows for more explanations.

She believes she will like this version better than the movie, said Taya Sockwell.

“I liked the movie well enough, but I didn’t love it,” she said. “I think the stage version will make things click better than the movie.”

Maynard said the show has live music, which benefits the production.

“With the costuming, the staging, the setting and the live orchestra, it allows people to immerse themselves in the story and enjoy live theater,” she said.

Sockwell said the orchestra is an interesting idea.

“After being in band, I’ve had this love for live music,” she said. “I think this will make the show even better.

Maynard said the show will also have two casts for the Friday and Sunday performances. However, some of the actors will perform as their character twice.

Sullivan plays Little Red Riding Hood in Friday’s production. She said having two casts gives more people the chance to participate in the production.

“The Browns love to give everyone a chance, and with that many people in production, they want to make sure everyone has a chance to go on stage,” she said. “We work with doubles so that one cast can get a break and rest while the other goes on.”

Sullivan said she loved working with her cast mates on this production.

Maynard said her favorite part of watching the department produce the musical is the student musicians.

“(They) are fantastic,” she said. “They’re extremely talented, and they have worked very hard. They’ve been working on this production since January, and just watching them come together and produce fantastic musical theater is exciting.”

Sullivan said students should come see this musical to relax from finals.

“I think it would be a great stress-reliever for everybody,” she said. “Also, who doesn’t like singing and watching others in character? It’s a great musical, and I think a lot of students here would like it.”