Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Have you ever had one of THOSE days? You know, one of those days where everything goes wrong. The kind of days where all you want to do is move to Australia? Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, based on the book by Judith Viorst, is the story of Alexander who is having one of THOSE days. He went to sleep with gum in his mouth and now he has gum in his hair. And his brothers each found a prize in their cereal boxes but all he found in his was cereal.  School isn’t much better – his teacher doesn’t like his singing, his best friend isn’t his best friend anymore, and his mother forgot to pack him dessert in his lunch box. And there were LIMA BEANS for dinner. YUCK. It’s really been a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

Alexander at Adventure Theatre

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day is one of my favorite books and the musical did not disappoint. The story is so relatable to kids (and adults) of all ages. Each time something would go wrong for Alexander, kids around the theater were nodding their heads as if to say that they had been there too. A couple of times my daughter leaned over to me to whisper “I HATE when that happens to me.” We really liked the songs too, especially what kids would change if they were in charge of the world.

My eight year old couldn’t stop talking about the mess that Alexander makes at his dad’s office and how bad she felt for him at the dentist’s office. She also loved “horrible” and “terrible” – cast members who brought some of Alexander’s problems to life. We weren’t the only ones – watching how they acted out Alexander dropping his sweater in the sink brought peals of laughter from the audience. I really appreciated how the actors used the actual text of the book throughout the play. And we all loved Adventure Theater’s signature puppets. Alexander talks about how he’s going to move to Australia, and the sentiment comes to life with a fabulous song and beautiful puppetry.

Alexander at Adventure Theatre

Adventure Theater is a small, intimate theater that’s perfect for children. Seating is first-come, first served, and there truly isn’t a bad seat in the house. We also like that it is not too loud, even during the musical numbers. The show is appropriate for all ages and runs about 50 minutes with no intermission – the perfect length for children. My daughter also loves that after the performance the cast is in the lobby to meet their pint-sized fans. I love that we have such a great opportunity to introduce my daughter to the joys of live theater so close to home.  

Adventure Theater is located at Glen Echo Park. The theater is a bit of a walk from the parking lot, so leave yourself a little extra time to get there.  The carousel is closed for the winter, but the aquarium and playground were both open the Saturday we were there (and with the mild winter we’ve been having, a number of families headed to the playground after the show).

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day runs from through March 31, 2018. There are multiple shows a day on the weekends as well as shows at various times Tuesday to Friday. Tickets for all ages are $19.50 each and can be purchased online. Several shows are already sold out so be sure to purchase tickets online before heading to the theater. There is also a sensory friendly performance on March 24 at 2 pm.

Alexander at Adventure Theatre

Photos by Michael Horan.

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