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Jan 23, 2018







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Courtesy photo.




Story Pirates

When: Wednesday, Feb. 8, 10 a.m.
Where: Capitol Center for the Arts, 44 S. Main St., Concord
Cost: $7
Visit: storypirates.org




Stories brought to life
Story Pirates perform in Concord

02/02/17
By Matt Ingersoll listings@hippopress.com



 The Story Pirates may be adults, but the interactive stories — with names like “The Fish vs. My Brother” — that they’ll be performing when they come to Concord Feb. 8 are all the work of kids.

The “pirates” are professional actors and musicians who perform original sketch comedy shows and musicals using stories written by elementary school kids. The Harlem, N.Y.-based group has performed at hundreds of schools and performing arts centers across the country, and they’re making a stop in the Granite State for the first time as part of their national tour. 
They will appear at the Capitol Center for the Arts in Concord on Wednesday, Feb. 8, at 10 a.m.
“The general concept behind Story Pirates is that we want to celebrate the words and ideas of young people, and that’s what we put out into the world,” Producing Director Jeremy Basescu said. “We always try to make the whole thing feel like a Broadway show that is in the voice of kids who wrote the stories.”
Basescu said the actors will perform a series of five or six “greatest hits” shows selected from tens of thousands of pre-rehearsed stories submitted by kids over the years since 2003. 
But each show also includes a segment at the end in which they perform something the kids in the audience come up with on the spot, and each of the skits usually actively engages the audience in some way.
“Some will have audience members actually yelling out at the characters to get them to do something,” he said, “and with others, some of our actors will run into the audience. … Some [shows] will vary from straight physical comedy to almost an entirely musical number.”
The improvised skit at the end will involve performers asking the audience members to come up with a character and give them traits to build a story around. Basescu said that skit can turn out to be any kind of story, as long as the actors feel they can perform it on stage.
Kids as young as 3 years old through elementary school have enjoyed the performances, Basescu said.
“Basically any child with enough sense of how a story works [enjoys them],” he said. “Obviously as kids get older, they’re more likely to pick out the jokes and the physical comedy.”
Favorite performances have included “The Fish vs. My Brother,” which Basescu said is about a girl who is trying to teach her little brother how to feed their pet fish but ends up banishing him from doing so when he does all the wrong things.
“In this case, you’d be getting the audience involved on one character’s side, as the girl is trying to get the audience to help her from preventing the brother from feeding the fish,” he said.
Basescu said dramatic moments will be built up during each show before coming to a big conclusion at the end that is usually musical in nature.
If you can’t make the show, Story Pirates has a free podcast, where stories are available to listen to through Sirius XM radio or by downloading on iTunes. They also frequently go on tour to promote children’s books.





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