“Pinkalicious” is a funny musical play for children, and it’s also sweet — literally.
An admission ticket includes a ticket to a pre-show “pink party” and a pink cupcake. On a Saturday afternoon, the audience was made up mostly of giggly little girls in pink and their mothers, many also wearing pink.
The story, from a children’s book by Victoria and Elizabeth Kann, is about a girl named Pinkalicious Pinkerton who loves the color pink and can’t stop eating pink cupcakes, in spite of her stern parents’ insistence on moderation. After a colorful (all pink) dream, she wakes up—guess what? Pink. She thinks it’s neat, and her brother Peter thinks it’s funny, but her parents are upset and rush her to the doctor’s office, where she is diagnosed as having “pinkitis.” The antidote is green foods, and no more pink cupcakes. But she resists the treatment, and her condition worsens until she takes it seriously.
That’s the basic plot, but the story is embellished with song and dance and creative sets and costumes. Erik Austin is director and choreographer, and he lets his unbridled imagination take the production to heights of pinkness and cuteness.
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There are even some pretty high-tech special effects, including mechanical cupcakes that dance and sing on the roof of the girl’s house in her dream, accompanied by strobe lights and fog.
A children’s ensemble of nine singers and dancers is delightful as they portray bees, bugs and birds who swarm around the pink Pinkalicious, mistaking her for a flower. Their costumes, designed by Rosemary Canfield, are charming. Stephen Tosh is musical director.
The roles of Pinkalicious and her brother Peter are double cast, with different actors in alternating performances. She is played by Ashlin Hatch and Dasha Novotny, and Spencer Doyle and Jayce Garcia take turns playing Peter. Their parents, Mr. and Mrs. Pinkerton are played by Lacey McNamara and John Adams. The acting is melodramatic, almost cartoon-like. Matthew Ambrose is the comical Dr. Wink, and Rebecca Canfield is a friend of Pinkalicious (until Pinkalicious turns pink).
Director Austin notes the play’s underlying morals as one of the reasons for presenting this Central Coast premiere. Adults are more likely to recognize these lessons than children will be.
Pinkalicious finds out that there can be too much of a good thing. She is also advised in a song by her parents that “You Get What You Get and Don’t Get Upset.” And her brother Peter likes pink himself, although boys aren’t supposed to like it. He sings “I Got the Pink Blues,” and in the end discovers that it’s OK to admit who you are and what you like.
You could even imagine a moral about liking people no matter what color they are. And of course, there’s this message: Eat your greens.
Young kids are not likely to get all this, but they will enjoy the colorful, lively, funny story. And the children in the ensemble obviously enjoy singing and dancing. They are Brooke Andris, Phoebe Browning, Carissa Carlberg, Isabel Carpenter, Melody Goldiner, Ella Gomez, Ariana Keshtgar, Lunabella Levin and Gabrielle Walter, and they will probably be tickled pink to get their names in the newspaper.