Missing ATI’s “Frog and Toad”

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In 2008 and 2009, a highlight of the holiday season for me was a visit with Actors Theatre of Indiana’s "A Year with Frog and Toad." Magically innocent and very knowing at the same time, the musical turned me almost evangelical as I praised it to friends, family and readers. I’m sure I wasn’t alone in looking forward to revisiting the swamp this month.

Unfortunately, though, Frog and his pal Toad weren’t anywhere to be found.

What happened?

According to ATI’s Judy Fitzgerald, her company wanted to restage the show this month. However, a touring production of the show is making a brief stop at Clowes Hall–in March–and the rights were withheld.

"Hard to believe because they are only doing two matinee shows," said Fitzgerald. And I agree. What kind of Scrooge would refuse to allow a holiday tradition in favor of a few matinee shows months later–especially a kid-appealing show so vital to one of Indy’s few fully professional companies?

"We were very disappointed," added Fitzgerald, "but plan on bringing the production back next Christmas."

Bravo to ATI. Boo to the "Frog and Toad" bean counting meanies. In the meantime, ATI will be launching its 2010 season with a March production of "Nunsense" with more shows to be announced.

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