The Hayloft Players present "Seussical Jr." at 7 p.m. tonight and Friday and at 1 p.m. Saturday at The Barn Theatre in Willmar.
The children's production of this "fantastical, magical, musical extravaganza" -- "Seussical Jr." -- is billed as one of the most-performed shows in America.
The story centers around Horton the Elephant, played by William Madsen, who finds himself faced with a double challenge -- not only must he protect his tiny friend Jojo, played by Sydney Lanning, and all the invisible Whos from a world of naysayers and dangers, but he must guard an abandoned egg, left to his care by the irresponsible Mayzie La Bird, played by Ingrid Lindgren.
Although Horton faces ridicule, danger, kidnapping and a trial, the intrepid Gertrude McFuzz, played by Carly Hulstein, never loses faith in him, the only one who recognizes "his kind and his powerful heart."
Ultimately, the powers of friendship, loyalty, family and community are challenged and emerge triumphant in a story that makes you laugh and cry.
The other cast members are:
Michelle Carlson is Mr. Mayor and Heidi Schmitz is Mrs. Mayor; Mary Carlson is both Sour/Young Kangaroo.
Emily Skalla is The Cat in the Hat while Ethan Bos is the Grinch with Ava Lindgren as Thing 1 and Emily Malmgren as Thing 2.
Sarah Carlson is Vlad Vladikoff and Rachel Lanning is Yertle the Turtle.
The Wickershams are played by Ava Lindgren, Elisa Obregon, Emily Malmgren, Ethan Bos, Gabe Fernandez and Jason Malmgren.
Kathryn Gubrud, Kayla Fernandez, Melaney Madsen, Rachel Lanning and Sarah Carlson are the Bird Girls.
Elisa Obregon, Gabe Fernandez, Jason Malmgren, Kathryn Gubrud, Kayla Fernandez and Melaney Madsen are the Fish.
The entire ensemble plays the Jungle Citizens, the Circus Animals and the Citizens of Whoville.
The play is directed by Nicole Dyson with assistant director Brady Dyson.
Christine Lindgren is in charge of costumes while props were coordinated by Sara Fernandez and Traci Bos.
The set is by Tim Miller, Sara Fernandez, cast, crew and parents. Lighting is coordinated by Carol Olson.
The assistants are Emma Ostby, Liz Carlson, Mihee Malmgren, Traci Bos, Mike Carlson, Jason Hulstein and Bill Madsen.
The Barn Theatre box office is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays and before each show. Tickets are $5. Call 320-235-9500 or visit the box office at 321 Fourth St. S.W. in downtown Willmar.