For over 80 years, puppet shows have been a mainstay here at the library. Thousands of Nashville children have grown up with Wishing Chair Productions' adaptations of classic fairy and folk tales. Through Bringing Books to Life!, even more children in Davidson County have experienced these puppet shows at their schools and childcare centers.
Perhaps lesser immediately known, however, are the troupe's Shakespearean productions. With the same thought and care demonstrated in their shows based on children's literature, our resident performing artists have adapted some of William Shakespeare's most famous plays for the library stage.
Later this month, audiences will have a chance to witness Wishing Chair's original adaption of The Tempest at the Main Library. On Friday and Saturday mornings at 10:30 AM, August 12 through August 20, the entire family can experience the classic story of the wizard Prospero, his daughter Miranda, and the incredible magical storm that brings new people to their once lonely island.
Although this is of course a kid-friendly adaption at a runtime of only 30 minutes, it is most suitable for children ages 4 and above. Younger children may be frightened by the simulated thunderstorm (hence the title), complete with sound and light effects. If you would like to get a sneak peek of the action, you can check out the show on the library's YouTube.
Another great way to get ready to see The Tempest is to read! Our library's collection has several illustrated adaptions of the play for young readers. Among my favorites is a version illustrated by Jane Ray, about whom I've previously written.
Also included in our collection is an anthology of several of Shakespeare's plays, including The Tempest, presented in a comic book format!
Older children in elementary and middle school might appreciate this illustrated prose adaptation, retold in modern-day English.
There are other themes in The Tempest to inspire your family reading, including fathers and daughters, islands (enchanted or otherwise), rain and storms, and magic and magicians. Check out some recommendations below. We hope to see you at The Tempest in August!