family theater

A scene from 2018's “We Tell Scary Stories” with children from the audience participating.

Editor's Note: This event happened last Saturday, June 22.

Free live entertainment.

“It’s a way to introduce children to live theater,” caryn desai, (sic) International City Theatre's artistic director and producer, said.

She refers to the free Saturday Theater series program produced each summer by ICT. desai started the program 15 years ago to offer an accessible and affordable program for families to introduce children to the theater. The next production is on stage this Saturday.

Shows are original, based on history and books, desai said. And other times, they can even be based on folklore, such as this year’s show.

Called “Cuentos De La Familia” or “Stories of the Family,” this year’s show highlights Latino folktales.

“The theater can educate as well as entertain,” desai said.

Last year’s show highlighted stories of the Middle Eastern culture. And as with every show, audience members can participate onstage as part of the show.

“This is interactive theater,” desai said.

desai said the program strives to find stories that speak to everyone in the community.

“We’re trying to be inclusive,” she said. “We are a diverse community.”

She said it’s important to find ways to support this diversity, and one way is through live theater.

The program is designed for elementary and middle school children, but all are welcomed.

The show is free and open to all. Seats are limited and reservations are required.

This show begins at 11 a.m. and will last approximately one hour on the Beverly O'Neill Theater stage, part of the Long Beach Entertainment and Convention Center, 300E. Ocean Blvd. Parking is available at the parking structure for $15 or 2-hour metered parking is also available on Ocean Blvd.

To make reservations, go to, email or call 562-495-4595, ext. 103. Be sure to include your name, your phone number and the size of your party.

ICT is an award-winning nonprofit theatre company entering its 34th year. ICT performs a five-play season and has six community and educational outreach programs. The free Saturday Theater Series is one of ICT’s six educational programs and is sponsored in part by the Port of Long Beach.

Harry has been executive editor of Gazette Newspapers for more than 26 years. He has been in the newspaper business for more than 35 years, with experience on both weekly and metropolitan daily papers in Colorado and California.

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