“Once Upon a Mattress” opened to record crowds at IKEA Renton River Days. Director and producer Vincent Orduna hopes those crowds remain large through Aug. 10, the last performance of Carco Theatre’s 23rd annual Summer Teen Musical.
Orduna is also the city’s cultural arts coordinator and Carco Theatre manager. He says the 28 local teens in this summer’s musical do a “phenomenal job” in the retelling of the classic tale “The Princess and the Pea” by Hans Christian Andersen.
“Once Upon a Mattress” opened off Broadway in 1959 and moved to Broadway in 1960, with TV star Carol Burnett in the lead. The comic musical was later adapted for TV a few times.
Orduna calls “Once Upon a Mattress” a “very traditional Broadway musical.”
“It’s a really delightful script and the music is a lot of fun,” he says. “And the kids are funny. They just are.”
He picked the musical for its even split of men and women roles.
“That and it’s really got a sweet message in the end about true love,” he says.
About 12 of this year’s young actors are returning to Summer Teen Musical, and 16 are new. The actors are 13 to 19. After auditioning, the actors pay tuition for the 10-week summer program, through Renton’s park and recreation department.
In addition to acting, this year’s actors helped make the costumes, props and the set, which features a massive castle.
“The show is really good this year,” Orduna says. “People seem pleased with it. I know I am.”
“Once Upon a Mattress,” the 23rd Annual Summer Teen Musical, opened July 25. The comic musical continues at Carco Theatre Friday, Aug. 1 and Aug 2 at 7:30 p.m., Aug. 3 at 2 p.m., Aug. 8 and Aug. 9 at 7:30 p.m., and closes Aug. 10 at 2 p.m.
Carco Theatre is at 1717 Maple Valley Highway. Tickets are $12 for adults, $10 for students and seniors.
Call 425-430-6751 for more information.