Leo Lionni’s “Frederick” at the Chicago Children’s Theatre

Now that it is getting cooler here in the city, I am on the look out for fun indoor activities – we don’t want to be cooped up in the house all weekend! This morning I took Evie, Mack and Vivian to see Leo Lionni’s “Frederick,” a new musical at the Chicago Children’s Theatre. It tells the story of how a cute mouse family works together to appreciate the four seasons of the year. The show mirrored our values in so many ways (lots of references to the glorious beauty of nature). I felt good about introducing my kids to the characters.
The show was so completely, absolutely, utterly adorable. In every possible way. The costumes were so cute! The music was so catchy! The stage was sweet and simple.  I couldn’t help but smile for the duration of the 65 minute show.
And, much to my delight, all three kids were smiling and engaged, too. Any event that can capture the imagination and wonder of 2, 4 and 6 year olds is truly special.  While Vivian smiled at the life-like puppets, Evie cheered for the characters and their unique personalities.  I noticed Mack’s enthusiasm for the props like falling leaves and snow (“It’s not real snow, Mom,” Mack informed me. “It’s just little crumples of cotton balls.”) They all easily found something to connect with and love.
As I noted the last time we went to a show at the Chicago Children’s Theatre, it takes a lot to keep kids’ attention these days. With on-demand cartoons and iPads and DVDs in the car, it seems like kids can’t escape the allure of passive entertainment.  But, the Chicago Children’s Theatre interacts with kids on a pure and simple level, and I am so grateful to have this group in my back yard.
After the show the performers greeted kids in the lobby. Evie was shy, Mack was curious, and Vivian was thrilled!! A great way to end a fun outing!
I consider it my duty and responsibility to introduce my kids to the arts.  Living in the city requires a bit of sacrifice, but benefits like the Chicago Children’s Theatre make it all worthwhile.  If you have a free afternoon from now until November 16, book tickets for “Frederick“!
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