Third chance for youth theater production

Emily Furniss as Belle and Malachi Ng as The Beast in the Nelson Youth Theater production.

Emily Furniss as Belle and Malachi Ng as The Beast in the Nelson Youth Theater production.

The long drought for youth theater performances in Nelson is set to be broken this school holidays with two productions planned.

For the production of Into the Woods JR, this will be the third time the show was set to run.

The first two attempts were postponed in January and April due to Covid-19 announcements and restrictions.

Nelson Youth Theater producer manager Richard Carruthers said the children were delighted to finally be able to play the shows. Beauty and the Beast JR is also staged next week.

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“They are just ready to explode on stage. These kids hang around for it.

“There are people who love their sport – imagine they haven’t been able to play their sport for a year. They would be desperate to get back into it. It’s the same with these theater kids.

The children and young people who act in the productions are between 3 and 17 years old.

Both shows, Into the Woods JR and Beauty and the Beast JR, were great family entertainment over the holidays, Carruthers said.

“These are beautiful, colorful, engaging and uplifting shows. Live theater is so much better than sitting around staring at screens or accessing stuff on Netflix.

The shows lasted just over an hour and captured the attention of even the little ones.

“Young children are not at all bored when they come to watch these things. They sit absolutely delighted by what they see in front of them…singing and dancing.”

The Nelson Youth Theater has been around for 23 years and puts on an average of about 10 shows a year, including five or six musicals, Carruthers said.

Even through Covid-19, the NYT managed to hold five musicals in 2020, and the same number in 2021, and would likely hold five musicals this year as well, he said.

Into The Woods JR plays this Saturday and Sunday (July 9, 10) at 2 p.m. and 6 p.m.

Beauty and the Beast JR plays Wednesday, Thursday and Friday (July 13-15) next week at 2pm and 6pm.

Both productions are to take place at the Theater Royal in Nelson. Tickets are available at