February 2, 2016

Jessica Pope
Communications and Media Relations Coordinator

VSU Theatre and Dance Presents Bunnicula: The Musical

A dancing cat, a howling dog, and a vampire bunny. The perfect pet combination for any family. It’s a dark and stormy night and Chester, the family cat, and Harold, the family dog, sit waiting for their owners to return home from the movies. Chester and Harold are more than just pets; they’re good friends, too. When the Monroes finally get home, they come bearing a surprise. They’ve found a bunny in the movie theater. But this is no ordinary rabbit. This is the extraordinary Bunnicula. When the family’s produce starts losing its juice, Chester thinks he knows what’s causing the fantastic phenomenon. Bunnicula is a vampire. Or maybe Chester’s imagination is getting the better of him. Singing and dancing their way through this hilarious mystery, the furry friends find room in their hearts, and in their home, for one very unique bunny. — Plays for Young Audiences synopsis.

VALDOSTA — Valdosta State University Theatre and Dance will help children learn that different is beautiful and things are not always what they seem when it presents Bunnicula: The Musical, the 2015-2016 season’s Theatre for Young Audiences touring production.

Based on the children’s book series created by Deborah and James Howe, Bunnicula: The Musical “tells the story of a bunny who is a bunny not like other bunnies,” shared Jacque Wheeler, director, choreographer, professor of theatre, and head of VSU’s Theatre and Dance Area. “He has no friends. He cannot speak, and his behavior arouses suspicion in those around him. Some are distrustful, even fearful. It is only after he commits an act of kindness and those around him begin to see his other qualities that he is accepted by all and lessons are learned about misjudging others and tolerance. Things are not always what they seem to be.”

Public performances are scheduled for 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 5, and 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 6, in Sawyer Theatre.

Individual admission tickets are $15 for adults, $12 for senior citizens, $10 for children and non-VSU students, and $9 for groups of 10 or more at a single performance, plus tax and a nominal processing fee. Admission is free for all VSU students with a valid university identification card.

Following the weekend’s on-campus performances, VSU Theatre and Dance will kick off its Theatre for Young Audiences area tour, which typically includes 15 to 20 performances at schools, art centers, and more throughout South Georgia and North Florida.

“VSU has a 35-year tradition of presenting plays for young audiences and touring them to local and surrounding areas,” Wheeler said. “Over the years we have presented live performances to more than 175,000 young people — a staggering number.”

The goal of VSU’s annual Theatre for Young Audiences production is to expose children in the rural South to live theatrical performances. The touring productions are also an opportunity for VSU to share with the children the importance of post-secondary education.

“The students are excited and engaged by the performances,” Wheeler continued. “We provide educational materials for pre- and post-performance activities. Many, many places ask us to return, which speaks to the popularity and educational value of the performances.”

Theatre for Young Audiences productions are primarily geared toward boys and girls in kindergarten through fifth grade.

“VSU Theatre and Dance continues its commitment to the area and the region to contribute to the cultural life of the community and enhance the learning of its young people,” Wheeler added.

Tickets may be reserved by calling the VSU Theatre and Dance Box Office at (229) 333-5973 between the hours of 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday or by visiting https://www.ticketreturn.com/prod2/team.asp?SponsorID=7166asp?SponsorID=7166#.VgrU0Uud8RU 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

The VSU Theatre and Dance Box Office and Sawyer Theatre are located on the first floor of the VSU Fine Arts Building, at the intersection of Brookwood Drive and Oak Street.

Contact Jacque Wheeler at (229) 333-5829 or jwheeler@valdosta.edu to learn more about VSU's Theatre for Youth performances.

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Valdosta State University’s 2013-2019 Strategic Plan represents a renewal of energy and commitment to the foundational principles for comprehensive institutions.

Implementation of the plan’s five goals, along with their accompanying objectives and strategies, supports VSU’s institutional mission and the University System of Georgia’s mission for comprehensive universities. 

The story above demonstrates VSU's commitment to meeting the following goals: 

Goal 1: Recruit, retain, and graduate a quality, diverse student population and prepare students for roles as leaders in a global society.

Goal 3: Promote student, employee, alumni, retiree, and community engagement in our mission.

Goal 4: Foster an environment of creativity and scholarship.

Visit http://www.valdosta.edu/administration/planning/strategic-plan.php to learn more.