Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Adirondack Family Activities:
A Living-Able Performance of HONK in Long Lake

FrogandToadThere are many ways to celebrate spring in the Adirondacks. After boiling the last of our backyard maple sap my family looks for ways to relax and appreciate the change of seasons. One way is to catch a local art exhibit at one of the many arts organizations around the Adirondacks. Of course, there is still snow on the trails and even Gore and Whiteface will be open for the weekend to get that spring ski rush.

Part of the Adirondack Lakes Center for the Arts (Arts Center) in Blue Mountain Lake Living-Able Series, regional actors, Long Lake Central School students and adults with disabilities from Sunmount DDSO present a musical performance of HONK this April 13-14.

According to Adirondack Lakes Center for the Arts Board President Jamie Strader this is the fourth year the Art Center has “provided workshops and performance opportunities for individuals with disabilities at the Tupper Lake Sunmount locations, Arts Center and other regional locations.”

Strader says, “I’ve been involved for the last two years and the Living-Able Series is a fabulous program. It is about diversity and acceptance. There are people of all ages, races and abilities involved in this cast. There is nothing like it around here that I know of. It is unique. With our other [Art Center] productions we include equity actors, but even if this was the only thing we do, we would fulfill out mission ‘to open a window on the world and bring art to the people and people to the art.’”

Though the program has grown over the past four years Stader says that this is one of the only Art Center productions that won’t go on the road primarily due to the transportation issues for some of the Sunmount clients.

This year’s performance of HONK by the musical team of George Stiles and Anthony Drewe, is loosely based on Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Ugly Duckling.” Watch while the strange-looking duckling “Ugly” goes on a quest to find his real mother after being lured away by a sneaky Cat. Ugly encounters some hardship but also encounters friendship and love.

Previous performances for the LIVING-ABLE Series have been A Year With Frog and Toad, Rockin’ To OZ and You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown.

“This program helps to recognize a quiet population,” says Strader. “We may see people from ‘homes’ or in a wheelchair around town but we don’t necessary talk to them or about them. They are not unseen as much as unrecognized. Through these performances we recognize and embrace this population. It is truly amazing.  We have school students on a first named basis with clients. We see a mix of the population that we rarely have access to.”

All performances are open to the public and will be held at the Long Lake Central School Auditorium. The Saturday, April 13 performance will take place at 7 pm while the Sunday, April 14 performance will take place at 2 pm. Tickets are available for $10 general admission.

Photo of the Living-Able Production of A Year with Frog and Toad provided.

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Diane Chase

Diane Chase is the author of the Adirondack Family Activities guidebook series, Adirondack Family Time. She writes about ways to foster imaginative play through fun-filled events and activities in the Adirondack region.

From her home in Saranac Lake, Diane also writes a weekly family-oriented newspaper column for the Adirondack Daily Enterprise and keeps her own blog Adirondack Family Time. Her writing and photography has appeared in numerous newspapers, magazines, marketing companies and advertising agencies.

She even finds time to assist her husband with Adirondack Expeditions guiding families and young adults in the High Peaks.

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