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AFRICA'S ORAL FOLKLORE COMES ALIVE IN "UNDER AFRICAN SKIES"

Why is the sky so high?

Such childlike questions will be addressed in "Under African Skies," a play celebrating the tradition of oral African folklore and presented by the Old Dominion University Theatre and Playtime Theatre for All Ages. Using puppets, live music and audience participation, the play, which will run March 23-25, features stories such as "Why Dogs Chase Cars," "Why the Sky is so High," and "How Ananse Got His Stories."

Written by Old Dominion faculty member Frankie Little Hardin, the play is about two storytellers traveling through Africa in search of stories to bring home to Virginia. When they come across a small farming village, the fun really begins as the villagers share their stories.

Faculty member Derek Gagnier is directing the play. Jill Snapp is designing the African-plain scenery, complete with trees, huts and a jeep, and Rachael Jean Sulecki is designing the puppets and costumes.

"The play promises to be an entertaining, educational spectacle," said Gagnier. "My goal is to get young people excited about these stories and the culture they celebrate."

"Under African Skies" will play at the University Theatre on Hampton Boulevard. Public performances are 7 p.m. Friday, March 23; 11 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. Saturday, March 24; and 2:30 p.m. Sunday, March 25. Tickets are $4 for adults and $3 for children. For reservations call 683-5305.

This article was posted on: March 1, 2001

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