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PHOTOS: Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax (Children’s Theatre Company)

A scene from Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax, opening Friday at the Children’s Theatre Company in Minneapolis. Photo by Dan Norman.

Dr. Seuss’s book The Lorax was first published in 1971. Although its calls for environmental responsibility and biopreservation may now seem classic, it is important to remember that 1971 was still very early in the modern American environmental movement. That same year, UNESCO founded the landmark Man and the Biosphere Programme, a pair of oil tankers collided in San Francisco Bay to create what was then one of the largest oil spills in history, and the very first U.S. container deposit legislation was passed into law in the state of Oregon.

A two-page spread from the book The Lorax Note the ubiquity of advertising in selling Thneeds – a stand-in for any “must have” good – to the population. Illustration by Dr. Seuss.

Although an illustrated children’s book, The Lorax is quite substantial, clocking in at 56 pages. It also presents numerous complex ideas in easy-to-digest fashion: cost-benefit analysis, industrialization, habitat destruction, resource exploitation, and economic boom-bust cycles, to name just a few. Small wonder that it frequently appears on lists of the best picture books in the world and on teachers’ lists of the best books for children. Small wonder, too, that a stage adaptation of The Lorax is opening at the Children’s Theatre Company in Minneapolis this weekend.

Here’s a look at the upcoming show:

The ensemble. Photo by Dan Norman.
Fish puppets in Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax. Photo by Dan Norman.
Meghan Kreidler (left), Rick Miller (right), and H. Adam Harris (as The Lorax). Photo by Dan Norman.
Steven Epp as The Once-ler in Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax. Photo by Dan Norman.

Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax plays at the Children’s Theatre Company in Minneapolis, MN through June 10.

Twin Cities Arts Reader