If you hear anybody in the area throwing their head back and crowing or humming "I Won't Grow Up," chances are they are under the magic spell of the most charming production Cocoa Village Playhouse has done yet, "Peter Pan."
Directed by the indefatigable Anastacia Hawkins Smith, this production of the classic American musical stays true to its tradition of telling the story of the three Darling children who fly to Neverland to help the eternal boy fight pirates and read bedtime stories to his group of Lost Boys.
The children will charm the socks off you. Captain Hook (what a performance by Terrence Girard!) and his Pirates will crack you up with their sublime silliness. Wendy Bernier's terrific choreography, especially that by the Indians, will engage you. Scenic and lighting designer Ian Cook's lush, vibrant visuals will thrill you.
And the stage magic. Oh my.
In case you never had a childhood, here's the gist to the plot line: Having lost his shadow, the perpetual little boy Peter Pan and his escort Tinkerbell fly into the London nursery of the three Darling children. With the help of some fairy dust, the children fly with Peter and "Tink" to Neverland. While there, they encounter a band of pirates led by Captain Hook and befriend a tribe of Indians. Eventually, they grow weary of adventure and want the comfort of their own parents and own beds.
Yes, there is a childlike delight to the tale. But there is also a poignancy that will touch even the must crusted-over heart. That is thanks to a stage-load of heartfelt performances by a most talented cast.
Other kudos need to go to music director and conductor William H. Yoh and the offstage crew running this show and keeping Peter and friends flying. There is no doubt you, too, will be transported to Neverland. No matter your age, you will start clapping to save Tinkerbell and will gasp with delight when Peter first flies into that nursery.
It will transport you back to the time when you believed in fairies and dreamt that you, too, could fly if only you believed in the good things. If only.
Contact Harbaugh at 321-242-3717 or email@example.com.