Leawood Stage Company returns with free shows of ‘Seussical,’ its first live production since COVID-19

Seussical Leawood

The Leawood Stage Company is putting on its first live production since the beginning of the pandemic, 'Seussical.' The free musical comedy kicks off July 9 at the Ironwoods Park Amphitheater. Photo courtesy Leawood Stage Company.

Leawood Stage Company is rehearsing for its first live production since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic — ‘Seussical,’ a musical comedy based on the work of Dr. Seuss.

Characters who are featured in the musical include Horton the Elephant, The Cat in the Hat, Gertrude McFuzz, Amayzing Mayzie and Jojo.

Director Chris McCoy, who has put on other summer musicals like ‘The Music Man’ in 2007 and ‘Annie’ in 2017, said it was surreal to be back directing a live production after the last year.

The underlying message in ‘Seussical’ — that “a person’s a person no matter what” — was a key factor in choosing it for the company’s first production back from the pandemic, he said.

“After the past year and everything that we’ve been through, I can’t think of a better message to share with live audiences again,” McCoy said in an email to the Shawnee Mission Post.

Other themes

Friendship, loyalty, family and community are the main themes of ‘Seussical,’ according to Leawood Stagecoach Company.

The production will feature a cast of all ages — many of whom are siblings, along with parents and children in the same family.

McCoy said the number of families in the show is part of what he loves about directing ‘Seussical’ — and the inter-generational aspect of community theater.

“We have some cast members who are performing in their first community theater show, and seasoned veterans who have significant performance experience,” McCoy said. “Seeing this community come together to tell this story has been pure joy.”

Performance details

  • When: July 9 – July 11, and  July 15 – July 17, at 8 p.m. each night
  • Where: Ironwoods Park Amphitheater, 14701 Mission Road

The free performances are open to the public.

It is recommended that guests bring a blanket or a lawn chair. Dogs are also welcome to join families, but they must be leashed and it is asked that they do not disturb nearby audience members.

Picnics are also welcome during the event, but alcoholic beverages are not permitted at the park.

Additionally, light concessions will be available to purchase.

Guests can begin to set up their spot anytime after 3 p.m. on the day of the show.