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Presenting 'Junie B. Jones JR' at the Firehouse

Youth musical full of fun and tomfoolery

"Junie B. Jones The Musical JR" is being performed on weekends at the Firehouse Arts Center from March 22-31. (Contributed image)

A fun musical for kids and by kids opens at the Firehouse Arts Center next weekend -- "Junie B. Jones the Musical JR."

Pleasanton Civic Arts Stage Company in partnership with Bay Area Children's Theatre is presenting the production, bringing to life lovable characters and silly adventures based on the bestselling book series by Barbara Park.

The show is full of catchy, upbeat songs and choreography, and features two different casts of 25 students each from the greater Tri-Valley. Many of the actors are returning performers, having appeared in one of Civic Arts Stage Company's previous two shows this season: "Wonderland" in September, and "Mary Poppins JR" in December.

"Junie B. Jones" opens on her first day of first grade, where unexpected changes are in store: Junie's best friend Lucille has found new best friends, and Junie B. makes friends with Herb, the new kid at school.

Then, while in Mr. Scary's class, Junie has trouble reading the blackboard -- and she may need glasses. Add in a friendly cafeteria lady, an intense kickball tournament and a "Top-Secret Personal Beeswax Journal," and first grade is off and running for Junie B. and gang.

The script is full of fun and tomfoolery, with a sprinkling of nifty life-lessons thrown in for good measure and is appropriate for all ages.

Bay Area Children's Theatre has a network of professional directors, stage managers, designers and actors who offer a supportive experience for young actors to offer a quality performance. Auditions were open to all youths 10-18 from the Tri-Valley.

Silly adventures

What: "Junie B. Jones The Musical JR"

Who: Civic Arts Stage Company and Bay Area Children's Theatre

When: 7:30 p.m. Fridays; 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturdays; 2 p.m. Sundays; March 22-31

Where: Firehouse Arts Center, 4444 Railroad Ave.

Tickets: $12, $15, $18; child or senior, $7, $10, $13. Go to www.firehousearts.org, call 931-4848, or purchase at the theater box office.

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