May 12, Kids In Action; Little Mermaid Jr.

May 13, 2013 1:17 PM

Most of us know the story of Disney's "Little Mermaid". Later this week, Chico's "Playhouse Youth Theater" will be performing their unique version of the beloved musical. Reporter Rick Carhart has the story in tonight's Kids In Action.

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53 actors... as young as the age of four... will bring the popular show to the biggest, best venue in town.

Lisa says, "Laxson, I see as the Carnegie Hall of Chico, so the idea of performing at that stage for some of these kids is absolutely epic."

Each year, Lisa Schmidt and her troupe of actors team up with Chico Performances to bring children's theater to the Chico State campus. This year, the show will be familiar to most of the audience.

Bella Moes, who plays "Ariel", says, "you have to really know your character and make it suited to your own personality so you can make the character your own and it won't seem so copied."

Ella Shapiro, who plays "Sebastian the Crab", says, "the hardest part is that I have to do a Jamaican accent and I'm not known for being great at accents so it's a challenge."

Children's theater is unique in that the age range and experience levels of the actors is so wide.

Dylan Henson, who plays "Prince Eric", says, "I remember being that small and watching the leads be amazing and thinking that I wanted to be one of them one day."

Ella says, "I love watching the younger kids fall in love with acting and seeing it all happen around them."

And the older kids are always willing to help their young cast-mates.

Sophia Moes says, "they wiggle my arms and they call it spaghetti arms and it's supposed to release nervousness."

Bella Moes has been acting since she was seven. She and many other kids in this play plan to make theater a life-long passion.

Bella says, "There's no feeling like finishing a song and being clapped for and hearing that."

And their director is happy to encourage that passion.

Lisa says, "they're really like my own children and I usually get rather sentimental seeing them at those shows."

Playhouse Youth Theater encourages all children to give acting a try. For more information about the theater, which has programs going all year long... you can find their web site under "News Links" at or


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