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MISS NELSON HAS A FIELD DAY

Book, Music & Lyrics by Joan Cushing

Based upon the book MISS NELSON HAS A FIELD DAY by Harry Allard and James Marshall

Text copyright © 1985 by Harry Allard. Performed by arrangement with Houghton Mifflin Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

By special arrangements with Houghton Mifflin Company and Gurman Agency LLC.

Produced by Dallas Children’s Theater

From Dallas, Texas

Return to Horace B. Smedley School where the Smedley Tornadoes have never won a football game. In fact, they have never even scored a single point! With such a poor record and a team that is out of control, kind-hearted Miss Nelson comes to the rescue when she enlists the help of her alter ego, the ill-tempered Miss Viola Swamp, to coach the team and whip them into shape.

 

Considered by all to be “the meanest substitute teacher in the whole world,” Coach Swamp applies her trademark discipline to the players’ training, demanding tough exercises and no back talk. In the end, the team changes their attitude, pulls together, sharpens their skills, and manages to win the biggest game of the year.

 

A fun-filled musical from the award winning playwright/composer who brought you DIARY OF A WORM, A SPIDER & A FLY.

Best for Grades: K-5th

Audience Size: Large Venues

About the Company
Resources
 

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Company Background

Past Tours: Diary of a Worm, a Spider, and a FlyHow I Became a PirateMufaro’s Beautiful Daughters;The BFG (Big Friendly Giant); The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley; The True Story of the Three Little Pigs; A Midnight Cry ~ The Underground Railroad to Freedom ; And Then They Came For Me: Remembering the World Of Anne Frank

Now in its 35th season, Dallas Children’s Theater is the largest professional family theater in the Southwest, and has been named one of the top five theaters for youth and families in the United States by AMERICAN THEATER and TIME magazines. Designated as an American Masterpieces Touring Artist by the NEA, the theater’s acclaimed touring company travels coast to coast with professional large-scale productions designed to stir the heart, stretch the mind and promote education. Each touring production is selected and designed with a youth and family audience in mind from titles and materials that reflect the cultural diversity of our world community. They encompass a combination of new plays, familiar stories, literary works, biographies, mythology, folk tales, music, dance, and puppetry. With such a vast and impressionable audience to serve, DCT's productions usually target a different age range every other touring season. Study guides accompany each production and a variety of curriculum based workshops and residencies are also made available to teachers and students.

Dallas Children's Theater began a local touring program in 1985 with a Native American piece entitled Legend of the Bluebonnet. In 1989, the touring roster expanded to statewide and regional venues. In 1996, DCT launched its first national tour. September 2006 marked DCT's introduction to the world stage, as the theater was honored with an invitation to perform at the 2006 Shanghai International Children's Culture and Arts Expo in Shanghai, China.

DCT believes that theater provides a unique learning opportunity, which allows children exposure to ideas and imagery that reflect their own experiences and challenge their own understanding of the world in which they live. To this end, Dallas Children's Theater aims to engage and inspire children, to produce theater that reaches beyond the stage.

 

For more information, please visit the company’s website.

Critical Acclaim for the Book, Music, and Lyrics

“Bright and lively, with catchy songs and nifty slow motion effects, Miss Nelson serves up the concepts of losing, scoring, and winning...Cushing’s book is clear and the plot easy to follow, even for those not particularly schooled in football." 

—Potomac Stages

"A sequel to the joyous Miss Nelson Is Missing, it expands the picture book with a spatula-wielding cafeteria lady who is given a voice and a song, and Viola Swamp, determined to make the Smedley Tornadoes a force of nature once again. In the process, the players learn about teamwork, respect, for themselves and others, and the importance of not giving up.”

—The Washington Times

“Miss Nelson Has a Field Day' is a lively, engaging, interactive show, full of humor and with the expected moral for children - work hard, and you'll succeed." 

—The Morning Call, Allentown, PA

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Gallery of Past Productions

 

Curriculum Connections

  • Language Arts: reading, writing, comprehension, and vocabulary

  • Math: measurement utilizing traditional and nontraditional measurement devices.

  • Emotional and Social Learning: teamwork, collaborating to create projects, working together to play games, and encouraging peers in class; discipline; dedication; resilience; self-confidence; creativity, expressing unique perspective in various activities

  • Performing & Visual Arts: theater, music, production design, and how the arts are used to adapt a play from a book

 

Minimum Technical Requirements

  • Load In Time: 5 hours (with lights prehung)

  • Crew Needs: A theatrically knowledgeable crew of at least four (4)+, with a designated supervisor present at all times (including load-in, setup, technical rehearsals, performances, strike and load-out.) After load-in is complete, the local running crew should include at least two (2) deck hands and possibly a lightboard operator.

  • Min. Stage Size: A minimum playing area of 35ʼ wide by 25' deep (upstage of the proscenium) by 16ʼ high. A minimum of 10' (W) by 25ʼ (D) out of view & unobstructed wing space on both sides of the stage.

  • Sound Needs: A house sound system in good working order that can accommodate all of the Company’s audio components (the Company travels with the following: seven (7) body mics & laptop computer for playback). A headset/intercom system is needed with at least four (4) stations.

  • Load Out Time:  1-2 hours.

 

Outreach and Workshops

Creative Dramatic Workshop

Using themes and situations from the play, two DCT artist/teachers will guide students through lively theater games and exercises designed to ignite the imagination and open new avenues of self expression.

  • Duration: 1 hour

  • Limited to: 30 participants

  • For: 1st thru 3rd grades & 4th thru 5th grades.

Lecture/Demonstration

(Post performance) Using this production as a backdrop, DCT company members will lead a discussion and take questions regarding certain aspects of a theatrical performance including how plays are adapted from books and taken from the page to the stage.

  • Duration: 1 hr.

  • Limited to: Size of house

  • For: All Grades

 
Sensory Friendly Performances

This production is available as a “sensory friendly” or “relaxed” performance if arranged with the company in advance and with specific direction as to what adjustments are necessary for your venue.