New Victory Blog

The New Victory Blog is a place to learn more about New York's theater for families and the shows we produce. Find out what we do and what we're passionate about—exploring the arts as a family.
August 7, 2015

Summer Field Guide '15: Issue 6

It's summertime, and here at The New Victory we're busy getting ready for our upcoming season. All summer long, we're offering fun Summer Field Guides for you to celebrate being a kid in New York. Get inspired by the activities below and start getting in the mood for the shows to come!

In this issue, we celebrate Book Lover's Day on August 9th, and the four shows this season based on kids’ lit favorites.

August 9th – Book Lover's Day

In the three months between the last day of school and the first day of school, summer reading is a great way make sure the learning never stops. In honor of Book Lover's Day on August 9th, here are some summer reading recommendations, along with a peek at some of the stories coming to the New Victory stage this season.

Reading Recommendations

Two children reading togetherWhat's better than asking your local librarian for book recommendations? Asking six local librarians! The folks at Brightly recently teamed up with the New York Public Library to collect recommendations from librarians at five of their 87 branches around the city. Their choices (including Caps for Sale—more on that in a moment) are specific to pre-K reading, a formative time in every young book lover's career. Brightly offers recommendations for other age groups, too, along with tips and advice for parents of young readers.

Picture books don't tell stories that are only for the very young, though. Illustrated biographies are a great way to introduce kids of all ages to the personal stories of historical men and women. Marie Curie, Henri Matisse, Ella Fitzgerald and Harvey Milk are all represented in this great assortment from Brain Pickings. There's even a biography of Antoine de Saint ExupĂ©ry, who himself wrote and illustrated The Little Prince.

It's Reading Time!

If you're the competitive sort, you can track your summer reading as part of Scholastic's Summer Reading Challenge. Sign up, keep track of your minutes and help your school reach the best sellers—er… readers list. Scholastic also offers book recommendations based on age and grade level, as well as resources and tips for parents looking to encourage their kids to do more reading.

Artful Adaptations

Many books lend themselves to theatrical or cinematic adaptation, but illustrated kids' lit offers visual inspirations that can make the dramatized version instantly recognizable and engrossing—the story come to life! Augment your summer reading list with these stories, then come see them adapted for the stage this season at the New Vic.
THE GRUFFALO book cover
  • The Gruffalo Written by Julia Donaldson
    Illustrated by Axel Scheffler
    Published by Pan Macmillan

    Returning to The New Victory in October is the world-famous tale of THE GRUFFALO! Adapted by London's Tall Stories, the award-winning picture book gets a musical makeover with sing-along songs, slapstick comedy and scary fun for little ones. Bring along your copy when you come to see the show this fall—just don't get lost in the deep dark wood.
  • The Velveteen Rabbit Written by Margery Williams
    Illustrated by William Nicholson
    Published by Harper Collins

    Some theater magic helps one little rabbit become very real indeed, when London's Unicorn Theatre brings Margery Williams's timeless tale of THE VELVETEEN RABBIT to life. Their poignant adaptation, for kids over six, perfectly captures the spirit of the book. Even if you know the story, give the original another well-deserved read.
  • Handa's Surprise Written and Illustrated by Eileen Browne
    Published by Walker Books

    Colorful illustrations of friendship and animal mischief are brought to life through song and lively puppets in Little Angel Theatre's adaptation of HANDA'S SURPRISE. Dance and sing along, but don't give away the ending!
CAPS FOR SALE book cover
  • Caps for Sale Written and Illustrated by Esphyr Slobodkina
    Published by Harper Collins

    One art form inspires another when Adventure Theatre MTC interprets Esphyr Slobodkina's masterful illustrations through music in CAPS FOR SALE THE MUSICAL. We've been waiting 75 years to see those monkeys burst from the page onto the stage! Break out your first edition and join in the celebration.

Do you have a favorite storybook that you'd like to see adapted for the stage? Tweet us your choice @newvictory, #AdaptThisBook!
    Our favorite storybooks come to life starting with THE GRUFFALO in October, then continuing in 2016 with THE VELVETEEN RABBIT in January and HANDA'S SURPRISE and CAPS FOR SALE THE MUSICAL in February. Show your Book Lover's pride and let us know which shows you're planning on seeing!
Posted by Zack Ramadan
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