I've been wondering lately about when the best time is to start bringing my kid to live shows. I remember working at the WFT Box Office back in the day and telling patrons that we didn't recommend anyone under five for most shows. (Is my memory serving me?) But when I think about my own nearly- four-year-old and think about how much he loves movies like Mary Poppins I wonder if perhaps he might be ready now.
WFT is famously welcoming of small children. And not just in the audience either. I have seen kids ripping tickets, kids showing patrons to their seats, and kids selling concessions. (But wait--before you report us for child labor law violations, I should tell you that these kids were all eager volunteers, most of them having grown up at WFT as either the child of a staff member or a longtime Education Program participant.) But those are not the only places kids are at WFT. Nearly every show at Wheelock Family Theatre casts children--sometimes (as in the case of Charlotte's babies in Charlotte's Web) as young as three and four years old.
Kids adore seeing themselves reflected in live theatre, especially when those young actors are interacting and working right alongside older children and adults. Perhaps my focused 4-year-old would love a show that casts kids his age.
Ah, now if only there were a Wheelock Family Theatre in every city across the country!