Myra Klarman Photography families / seniors / headshots

Pioneer Theatre Guild: Willy Wonka

 
Pioneer Theatre Guild: Willy Wonka | Willy Wonka (Max Rasmussen) was portrayed deliciously with equal portions of deviousness and charm.
Willy Wonka (Max Rasmussen) was portrayed deliciously with equal portions of deviousness and charm.

Just as the golden ticket winners couldn’t wait to get inside Wonka’s factory, I couldn’t wait to see the opening night of the Pioneer Theatre Guild’s production of “Roald Dalh’s Willy Wonka.”

Pioneer was selected to prototype and fine-tune (a process known as “workshopping”) a new stage adaptation of Charlie and The Chocolate Factory before it becomes available for license to theatre groups worldwide. The honor was not without major challenges, though — such as receiving the script and score in piecemeal chunks over the weeks leading up to opening night. The show is also a major technical undertaking: anyone familiar with the story knows how much it relies on the adept execution of illusions and special effects.

And as if that weren’t enough… the show also includes nearly 100 27 elementary school children (they appear throughout the show in various roles so seamlessly that I actually thought there were almost 100 of them).

The show’s directorial staff includes four students from the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance: Etai BenShlomo, Clark Baxtresser, Sarah Yarrington, and Gavi Savit (all but Etai are recent Pioneer alumni!).

These photographs were shot during the first dress rehearsal and opening night. Here’s a taste that won’t spoil the special effects for anyone lucky enough to have a ticket for this coming weekend’s performances. (And if you’re the kind of person who believes in making your own luck, go purchase tickets — along with scrumptious chocolates! — at Morgan & York, located at 1928 Packard.)

Tickets

  • Adults: $12
  • Students/Seniors/Teachers: $8

Performance Schedule

  • Saturday, April 26 @ 7:30pm
  • Sunday, April 27 @ 2pm matinee
  • Friday, May 2 @ 7:30pm
  • Saturday, May 3 @ 2pm matinee
  • Sunday, May 4 @ 2pm matinee

All performances will be in Schreiber Auditorium at Ann Arbor’s Pioneer High School.

Pioneer Theatre Guild: Willy Wonka | Mr. and Mrs. Candyman (Daniel Mozurkewich and Sonya Major) can.
Mr. and Mrs. Candyman (Daniel Mozurkewich and Sonya Major) can.
Pioneer Theatre Guild: Willy Wonka | The poor Bucket family reads about the golden tickets in yesterday’s newspaper. (l-r: Sam Hubbard, Robby Eisentrout, Milo Tucker-Meyer, Hannah Overhiser, Monica Baker)
The poor Bucket family reads about the golden tickets in yesterday’s newspaper. (l-r: Sam Hubbard, Robby Eisentrout, Milo Tucker-Meyer, Hannah Overhiser, Monica Baker)
Pioneer Theatre Guild: Willy Wonka | Augustus Gloop (Kiel Lerch) and the ensemble: I Eat More.
Augustus Gloop (Kiel Lerch) and the ensemble: I Eat More.
Pioneer Theatre Guild: Willy Wonka | I love the sinister expressions on their faces.
I love the sinister expressions on their faces.
Pioneer Theatre Guild: Willy Wonka | Mike Teavee (Schuyler Robinson) is fierce!
Mike Teavee (Schuyler Robinson) is fierce!
Pioneer Theatre Guild: Willy Wonka | Charlie (Milo Tucker-Meyer) has a golden ticket! And he’s sure to steal your heart.
Charlie (Milo Tucker-Meyer) has a golden ticket! And he’s sure to steal your heart.
Pioneer Theatre Guild: Willy Wonka | The theretofore bedridden Grandpa Joe (Sam Hubbard) accompanies Charlie (Milo Tucker-Myer) to Wonka’s factory.
The theretofore bedridden Grandpa Joe (Sam Hubbard) accompanies Charlie (Milo Tucker-Myer) to Wonka’s factory.
Pioneer Theatre Guild: Willy Wonka | Mrs. Gloop (Zoë Berman) is in hysterics when Augustus falls into the chocolate river.
Mrs. Gloop (Zoë Berman) is in hysterics when Augustus falls into the chocolate river.
Pioneer Theatre Guild: Willy Wonka | Wonka (Max Rasmussen) tempts Violet Beauregarde (Clare Eisentrout) with his irresistible, multi-course gum.
Wonka (Max Rasmussen) tempts Violet Beauregarde (Clare Eisentrout) with his irresistible, multi-course gum.
Pioneer Theatre Guild: Willy Wonka | Veruca Salt (Ashley Park) wants it all!
Veruca Salt (Ashley Park) wants it all!
Pioneer Theatre Guild: Willy Wonka | Preparing to enter Wonka’s television room. (l-r: Sam Hubbard, Milo Tucker-Meyer, Hope Parow, Schuyler Robinson, Max Rasmussen)
Preparing to enter Wonka’s television room. (l-r: Sam Hubbard, Milo Tucker-Meyer, Hope Parow, Schuyler Robinson, Max Rasmussen)
Pioneer Theatre Guild: Willy Wonka | Charlie’s moment of truth.
Charlie’s moment of truth.

See also:

 

Comments

Thanks Myra!! Just like the amazingly talented PTG, you, too, are wonderful — hope to see Max (and you!!) on Sat! Love your Fairy Godmother (Augustus’ “real” mom :)

#1 Susan

We love you, Myra! These are fantastic!

#2 Lesa Huget

Myra! These pictures are beautiful, and capture every possible detail. Thank you so much for these fantastic photos!!

#3 Monica Baker

You’re very welcome — it’s a labor of love!

Hold the chocolate! According to my site log, many, MANY more people visited Relish today than on any other day — ever! Wow!

#4 Myra

Ahaha… Myra, these are wonderful. :) I’m so glad you were able to come back for the REAL costumes, sets, etc. And is it true that Max is coming on Saturday? I can’t wait for him to see the show. Thanks again!

#5 Clare Eisentrout

Oh yes, he’s coming! Can’t wait to see his face when you become a blueberry :)

#6 Myra

HI! these look great! I miss Wonka.

#7 Schuyler

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About Myra Klarman

I’m a professional photographer specializing in studio and lifestyle portraits of children, families, high school seniors, and performing artists. I live in Ann Arbor with my husband, Rich, and our 14-year-old son, Max. Learn more about my portrait and headshot services at Myra Klarman Photography.

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