One fateful morning, three bears were having a perfectly average day, loving one another and enjoying a delicious porridge breakfast until a young girl named Goldee Wynn Locks broke into their house, stole their porridge, broke a chair and fell asleep in one of their beds. At least, that’s their side of the story. In Judge Wallabee’s courtroom, that may have been enough—if it weren’t for a pesky bailiff reminding her that courtroom trials require testimony from more than one person.
All this unfolds on stage at the Arts Center at Dunham thanks to Sunset Players. “Goldilocks on Trial” is this year’s edition of their annual community production giving the young and young at heart the opportunity to take part in their first show on stage. Several families are involved, and more are brought together by the inexpensive community theater event. Sunset Players made every effort to create a family-friendly environment. After the show, there are snacks, juice, and a meet and greet with the cast and crew of the show. During the show, kids who aren’t as clingy as my three-year-old sat together on a mat just in front of the stage. Having all the kids together up front is a fantastic idea, especially considering the goal of the show: to bring the community closer together.
As trials go, Goldee’s is an absolute farce. Judge Wallabee, for all her insistence on decorum, shows none herself. The bailiff neglects to eject juror Little Red Riding Hood for any of her disruptive outbursts, like when she’s clearly listening to music on her headphones and suddenly starts singing Taylor Swift songs. Some of the witnesses are also on the jury, and while I’m not a lawyer, that definitely feels like a conflict of interest. The only ones who seem to be taking the trial seriously are Papa Bear (whose motivations are suspicious) and the two attorneys, District Attorney Muffinhead and Ms. Wombat.
Of course, all of this is intentional. What’s the point of putting Goldilocks on trial if you’re going to take it seriously? The two attorneys are both adorable hams who are clearly eating up the spotlight—even hammier than The Little Pig Who Was Not Eaten by a Wolf, who serves as a witness. One can only hope that the young cast members continue to grow up without a hint of inhibitions. Many of them have seem to have found the early inklings of a passion with this production. What a lovely thought it is that we have organizations like Sunset Players who can provide this kind of early opportunity to the kids in our community.
Zach Moning is the communications manager at ArtsWave. Reach him here with questions or comments about ArtsWave Guide.