Since March comes in like a lion and leaves like a lamb, it's the perfect time for children to meet the animals in Aesop's Fables. The New Conservatory Theatre Center's Family Matinee Series revives its popular Aesop's Funky Fables, adapted by Dyan McBride (March 13-April 4), featuring zany versions of "The Tortoise and the Hare," "The Fox and the Grapes," and more.
The Youth Musical Theater Company in Berkeley will mount the popular musical, Once Upon a Mattress (February 20-28), a retelling of Hans Christian Anderson's "The Princess and the Pea." The show imagines a kingdom where no one may marry until Prince Dauntless is wed, and his future bride must first pass the queen's difficult test. The show features music by Mary Rodgers, lyrics by Marshall Barer, and a book by Jay Thompson, Dean Fuller, and Barer.
The Youth Company at Berkeley Playhouse opens 2010 with Disney's Mulan Jr. (January 15-17 at the Julia Morgan Center for the Arts), the legend of a female warrior who hid her gender in order to defend the Chinese Emperor from the invading Huns. The stage musical features familiar songs from the movie and new selections.