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Big Drama, Very Small Kids

Theater for the toddlers.

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We live in a theater town. But with kids, how often do you actually see a show? Worse yet, how often do you take the offspring with you? Starting September 10, the New Victory Theater offers the perfect solution with its play The Green Sheep, based on a picture book by the popular Aussie Mem Fox. Get this: The show was created specifically for kids as young as 1 (!) and as old as 5, and designed to eliminate the social anxiety that keeps parents with wee ones away. “It’s the first time we have had a show for children as small as 1,” says Laura Kaplow-Goldman, the New Vic’s public-relations director. “A lot of work went into how to create a theatrical experience for kids this little so they didn’t wander off in the middle.” To that end, the show takes place in the theater’s studio space. Audience members sit in a very un-scary “grassy meadow” on the floor surrounded by a picket fence. “It’s a sheep pen for the kids. It’s really adorable,” says Kaplow-Goldman. Three puppeteers and a musician perform outside the fence. “The kids go on a journey to find this tricky, elusive green sheep. They meet all different types of sheep”—bath, night, sleepy, red, and blue—“before they can figure out where the green sheep is,” she continues. The New Victory knows what goes into making an event toddler-friendly: The play lasts only 50 minutes, the schedule was chosen not to interfere with naps, and there will be ample stroller parking. “This theater is designed for people with young kids. We allow cell phones; we know parents need to get calls,” explains Kaplow-Goldman. In other words, no one will bat an eye if your family spends the entire show jumping, or if you breast-feed mid-show.

9/10 to 9/28, times vary. 229 W. 42nd St., nr. Seventh Ave. (646-223-3010 or NewVictory.org); $20.


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