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Performing Arts

Playing some fo the human, animal and spirit characters in the "The Farm" are, from left, Chloe Thompson, Reese Elam, Sophie Lawson, Carina Basora, Violet Babb, Mayala Booth, Ben McKee, Zan Holtgrave, Daphne Trillana, Camila Dallas-Gonzelez. (Submitted photo by Tod Tyslan)

Animals, kids and spirits save farm in YSKP show

The forces of land development and farmland conservation squared off in the late ’90s in Yellow Springs during a fight for the future of the 1,000-acre Whitehall Farm. Now, the Yellow Springs Kids Playhouse retells the story during its summer musical using animals, land spirits and a cast of local townspeople.

YSKP’s 21st original musical, “The Farm,” inspired by the events of the Whitehall Farm auction and George Orwell’s “Animal Farm,” asks the question — can the wild animals, farm animals and human kids work together to save their beloved farm from developers?

“The Farm” runs Thursday–Sunday, July 16–19, and July 23—26 at 7:30 p.m. at the Antioch College Amphitheater, 920 Corry Street. All performances start at 7:30 p.m. and cost $10 for adults and $5 for students and seniors.

Sponsored by a $10,000 award from the National Endowment for the Arts and grants from Ohio Arts Council “The Farm” relies on puppets, elaborate masks, full-size bulldozers and tractors made out of recycled materials to tell the story of a family struggling to decide the fate of their farm. The play was written by Joan Sand, a Minnesota librarian who founded the theater company that YSKP was based upon, and is directed by Ara Beal, YSKP’s managing artistic director.

A special “Art for All” performance will be on Friday, July 24, and is geared towards those on the autism spectrum. There will be special educators on site to help audience members navigate their experience along with fidget toys and calming centers. Inspired by Autism Theatre Initiative, the performance was sponsored in part by the Yellow Springs Human Relations Commission and is open to the public for a price of $5 per ticket.

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