By Tara Taylor
A year ago, Berkeley author Annie Barrows received an email from an old friend that resulted in bringing the characters from her best-selling children’s book series, Ivy + Bean, to life. The email, from Nina Meehan, executive director of Bay Area Children’s Theatre, was a simple question: what do you think about making Ivy + Bean into a musical for kids?
Barrows, along with her publisher Chronicle Books, loved the idea and gave BACT the blessing to transform Ivy + Bean into an original stage production. Meehan immediately reached out to New York playwright and composer Scott Elmegreen, creator of Magic School Bus Live! The Climate Challenge, for help. The result is a new musical that debuts Saturday, Feb. 9 at Berkeley’ Freight and Salvage for a three-week run, then travels to San Ramon and Mill Valley.
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