Shows

Cirque Du Soleil's Volta Is an Artful Adrenaline Rush

Cirque du Soleil's Volta show, which just landed in the greater NYC area, is a feast for the senses. From a stirring score to exhilarating acrobatics and heart-stopping thrills, the newest Cirque spectacle captivated audience members of all ages at the performance my 10-year-old son and I saw Sunday afternoon under the Big Top at the Meadowlands in East Rutherford, New Jersey, where it will run through May 6.

Volta also plays at the Nassau Colesium on Long Island, beginning May 17, and at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center, starting in July.

Snow White at the Arden Children’s Theatre: A Review

Walk into the Arden Theatre, and step right into a unique version of the Enchanted Forest. The stage is set simply: A house, trees, a table, a stool, and a trunk of clothes, but what unfolds over the course of an hour is a bit of interesting, although at times chaotic, magic as this entire adaptation of the classic tale of Snow White is brought to life by just two actors.

The Little Red Fish Review: A Low-Key, Whimsical Puppet Show

Amid a dimly lit stage, stacks of books float through the air as the imagination of a little boy in search of his missing pet runs wild in The Little Red Fish, a new production from the New York City Children's Theater playing in NYC this April. The theater teamed up with Puppet Kitchen, the same group behind the oversize, colorful puppets in the popular Very Hungry Caterpillar Show, for Little Red Fish. Darting about the stage throughout the 30-minute show, his elusive finned friend elicits gasps from the audience whenever it punctuates the sober set with its burst of vermilion light.

Read on to see why The Little Red Fish is one of our top theater picks for NYC kids this spring.

Historical Places Fun to Visit With Kids in Eastern Connecticut

History runs deep in Eastern Connecticut. From the first settlements in the late 1600's, through the battles of the American Revolution, and into modern times, Eastern Connecticut bares the marks of those who made significant contributions in the arts, military, manufacturing and more!  Just check out the amazing places you can experience a step back in time with your kiddos!

The Best Spring Theater for NYC Kids: 17 Fabulous Shows

The spring is always a great time for family theater, but this season looks particularly exciting. There are page-to-stage adaptations of cool kid lit (The Little Red Fish for toddlers and Seedfolks for tweens); wordless spectacles to captivate all ages (clown show Air Play and underwater spectacle Symphonie Fantastique); and Lincoln Center's Big Umbrella Festival, the first-ever monthlong performance fest for children on the autism spectrum.

While on Broadway it's all Frozen, Harry Potter, and Mean Girls mania, there's no need to shell out big bucks to give your kids a memorable live entertainment experience in NYC. Most of the 17 shows we're spotlighting are just $25—or less—per ticket.

The Royal Hanneford Circus: An Annual Tradition that Won't Break the Bank

While circuses like Ringling Brothers, The Big Apple Circus and Cirque du Soleil are household names, the lesser-known Royal Hanneford Circus ranks on the list of must-see circuses. We took it upon ourselves to check things out at a recent visit in Westchester, N.Y., and have what you should know about its upcoming visit to Wilmington, Mass.

Read on for the inside scoop, and be sure to sign up for our newsletters to receive stories like this in your inbox!

SpongeBob the Musical Hammers Home All the Right Messages

SpongeBob SquarePants (the cartoon) might be pretty far down on your list a parent-approved media. But SpongeBob SquarePants: The Broadway Musical just made it to the top of mine. Talented actors, a solid storyline, and insanely imaginative sets—and a complete lack of hokeyness—made this performance a family Broadway standout. You won't find oversized sponge or starfish costumes, but the talent seamlessly translated the characters (none of whom are human) to the stage and easily transported the audience to a quirky and much-loved Bikini Bottom.

Read our review for a sense of what to expect from this infectious performance, or check out our complete Theater Guide for NYC Kids for many more options.

Theaters with Sensory-Friendly Performances for NJ Kids

Taking littles to the theater opens up opportunities for exposure to the arts, building social skills, and learning about appropriate audience behavior. For children with autism, developmental disabilities, or sensory sensitivities (such as difficulties with bright lights, loud noises and sudden, surprising bursts of volume or activity), the theater can be an intimidating place.

Luckily, NJ is home to several performing arts spaces that offer exclusive performances for kids with special needs, so the entire family can experience the arts together. These sensory-friendly performances often include accommodations such as lowered volume and raised lighting, the ability to move about the theater freely, dedicated quiet areas, and trained staff to lend a helping hand should the need arise.

Read on for a list of theaters and upcoming performances where you can know that your child will feel welcomed and loved, just as they are. We hope you enjoy the show!

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