Imagine a world where everything is edible. Of course it would inspire you to sing and dance. 67 local kids, ages six to eighteen, are taking part in the Dakota Academy of Performing Arts' Willy Wonka Jr.
"To see the things they come up with on their own is a lot of fun," said co-director Bob Wendland."They come to rehearsal with some bare bones blocking, and we have choreography. The kids make their own character traces. A lot of them get to pick their own names if they're in a chorus. They really take ownership of their characters, so it's a lot of fun to watch it unfold on stage."
Tucker Hammer is the "Candyman" in the production. He says theater has helped him with his social skills. He also likes knowing that he's a role model.
"It's actually been pretty fantastic seeing the younger generations and having them sing," said Hammer. "You start to see talent and by your behaviors you start to influence them with certain mannerisms. Kinda cool."
Along with learning the fundamentals of the stage, the student actors are also learning about back stage work. For Emma Cambell, she's attracted to the entire process.
"I like to meet new people and be with the directors."
Talking and singing about candy is rather enticing too.