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Special to the News-Times

The theater committee at the South Arkansas Arts Center has announced the selection of Mike Means and Bill Meyer as directors for the upcoming play “Peter and the Starcatcher,” sponsored by Murphy-Pitard Jewelers.

Auditions for the swashbuckling production are scheduled for Sept. 17-18.

The comedic team of Means and Meyer have a long history at SAAC. Means first stepped on the SAAC stage in 1998 in “The Musical Comedy Mystery Murders of 1940,” with Meyer’s first production the holiday show “Fruitcakes” in 2006. It was just a few years later in 2010 when they appeared together in the Agatha Christie classic murder mystery “The Mousetrap” with many more shows to follow – including “The 39 Steps” and “Twelfth Night.” For the last six years, the two have been making people laugh as part of El Dorado’s improv group Give Me A Second.

In this swashbuckling grown-up prequel to “Peter Pan,” a dozen brilliant actors playing pirates, mermaids — and of course, our favorite Lost Boys — set out for an adventure filled with ingenious stagecraft and the limitless possibilities of theatrical storytelling. Means invites the community to “channel your inner pirate and join us for auditions. We want the project to be fun for the cast and the audience.”

“If you leave feeling inspired or at least a little seasick, we’ll consider it a success,” Meyer added.

It’s the directors’ comic timing and joy of laughter that make them a perfect fit for this production.

“Mike and Bill have an enthusiasm for this project that is truly infectious,” said SAAC Executive Director Laura Allen. “It’s going to be as much fun to participate in this show as it will be to watch it!”

In 2004, “Peter and the Starcatcher,” the first in a series of five novels written by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson, took on the story of the central character before he becomes Peter Pan. Peter and the Starcatcher was adapted for the stage by Broadway veteran Rick Elice, known for the Tony Award-winning hit Jersey Boys, a jukebox musical about the ‘50s rock band “The Four Seasons.”

For more information about “Peter and the Starcatcher,” call the SAAC office at 870-862-5474 or visit SAAC is located at 110 E. Fifth St., El Dorado.

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