GENEVA NY --- Physical theater with an extra helping of rice and laughter. The magic that happens when an immigrant child falls in love with books and reading. An upbeat adventure-comedy about a musical progeny. And a searing drama about witchcraft hysteria in 1692 Salem, Mass.

Four shows spanning diverse styles and messages make up the 2018-2019 ArtSmart Educational Theatre series at the Smith Opera House.

ArtSmart’s delightfully educational shows are specifically designed for school groups and are open to the general public. Children’s picture books and classic literature, United States history and world history, relevant social issues and experiences are all transformed and presented live on the Smith Opera House stage. This series is designed to encourage thinking, creativity and fun while complementing school lessons.

Designed for school groups but appealing to audience members of all ages and backgrounds, these four productions welcome everyone to the theater.

Here is this season’s lineup:

GALUMPHA: EXPERIMENTS IN HUMAN ARCHITECTURE Sunday, October 14 at 3 p.m.

Monday, Oct. 15 at 10 a.m.

Combining stunning acrobatics, striking visual effects, physical comedy and inventive choreography, Galumpha brings to life a world of imagination, beauty, muscle and merriment. The three performers create a sensory feast of images ranging from the ridiculous to the sublime, drawn together into a seamless whole, consistently bringing audiences to their feet. Galumpha is a triumphant mix of art and entertainment, offering world-class, award winning choreography (Edinburgh Festival Critics' Choice Award, Moers International Comedy Arts Prize). This show is geared towards students of all ages as well as adults.

TOMAS AND THE LIBRARY LADY

Monday, Dec. 10 at 10 a.m.

Tomás and the Library Lady tells the true story of Tomás Rivera, a Chicano author, poet and educator who found an unlikely friend in a librarian when he was a young boy. Rivera’s empowering story inspired Pat Mora to write a book telling his story. The book has been adapted to the stage by Playwright José Cruz González.

Tomás, the son of migrant workers, was born in Texas and loves the stories Papa Grande tells to him. One day while his family is in Iowa picking crops, Tomás meets the Library Lady and nothing is ever the same again. Soon his imagination takes off as he reads book after book, discovering a world filled with dinosaurs, tigers, and explorers! This bilingual play with music is recommended for ages 5 and older.

THEY CALLED HER VIVALDI

Sunday, March 24 at 3 p.m.

Monday, March 25 at 10 a.m.

They Called Her Vivaldi is produced by Theatre Lovett, a theatre company based in Ireland. The play tells the story of a girl named Cecilia Maria, called Vivaldi by many for her musical gifts, and her father Edward M. Haberdasher who makes her a hat which she calls Capello. This hat offers comfort to Cecilia Maria from the loud noises of the outside world, and also helps her to see and compose the songs that come from the customers who enter her father’s shop. Through the eyes and ears of this gifted young girl, the audience goes on an adventure to discover the gifts and talents hidden within the town of Triste. For ages 7 plus and adults of all ages.

THE CRUCIBLE

Sunday, May 5 at 7 p.m.

Monday, May 6 at 10 a.m.

National Players, America’s longest-running touring company, will be performing Arthur Miller’s The Crucible as the final ArtSmart show for the year.  In Miller’s classic play, no one is safe as a reign of terror rips through 1692 Salem. Led by Abigail Williams, a group of girls who claim to have seen the Devil hurl out charges of witchcraft, sending those who won't confess to the noose. When the accusing finger points to his wife, John Proctor is forced to confront his past and determine his future.

Miller's searing drama, inspired by his experiences during the McCarthy era, comes to vivid new life in the National Players' bare-knuckle staging. It’s a piercing look at what can happen when truth is bent to political convenience. For junior high and high school students and older.

ArtSmart is generously sponsored by Lyons National Bank and the Nelson B. Delavan Foundation. Study guides for each show are available to educators who request them in advance.

General admission tickets for all ArtSmart performances are $6.50 each and can be purchased in advance at www.thesmith.org or at the Smith Box Office. Tickets are also available at the door. School groups can register for the weekday performances at https://thesmith.org/education/register-for-artsmart/ .

The Smith Center for the Arts, stewards of the historic Smith Opera House, provides diverse arts and educational enrichment opportunities year-round for Finger Lakes residents and visitors. The Smith Opera House is at 82 Seneca St. in Geneva, NY. Box Office hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday. For more information, call 315-781-5483 during box office hours or visit www.thesmith.org.

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