Willy Wonka: The Musical @ Magnuson Park Theatre

Bubblegums and gobstoppers 🍬

📸: Broadway Bound Children’s Theatre

📅 December 1st – 17th + January 5th – 13th 
📍 Broadway Bound Children’s Theatre @ Magnuson Park Theatre: 7110 62nd Ave NE, Seattle
🎟 Prices from $15 – $20

You’d be hard-pressed to find a theatre lover that doesn’t have some sort of childhood performance experience. Even if it’s just playing first lobster in the nativity play (“There was more than one lobster present at the birth of Jesus?”), you catch that theatre bug early and it’s in you forever. Some of my fondest memories are from Contra Costa Civic Theatre summer camp, acting in haphazard mashups of pop culture properties meant to placate kids and parents alike. (If you want to track my age, one pair of plays was Hook’s World and Beauty & T2.) 

So IMHO, Broadway Bound Children’s Theatre is doing the lord’s work of creating generations of future showtunes belters, MFA candidates, and extremely opinionated audience members. The company stages several full-scale, high-quality musicals every year (recent ones include MatildaElf, and mainstay Annie), all starring children ages 5-18.  

Their holiday offering is Willy Wonka: The Musical, where small ones will act their butts off in Roald Dahl’s colorfully rendered but pointedly sinister treatise against greed, gluttony, and naughty little thieves. And if you like what you see, consider coming back another day and see a whole new cast; the December outing includes four different companies (grouped into Bubblegum, Gobstopper, Jellybean, and Lollipop), while the January staging has the Marshmallow and Taffy casts. 

I’m also just excited to see very small humans sing “Oompa Loompa” a bunch of times. 

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Marcus Gorman

Marcus Gorman is a Seattle-based playwright and film programmer. He once raised money for a synagogue by marathoning 15 Adam Sandler movies in one weekend. You can find him on Instagram and Twitter @marcus_gorman.