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Duluth Playhouse to present Peter and the Starcatcher

Jake Mathey. Submitted

By Jess Hughes

Duluth Playhouse fifth Main Stage play of the season is Peter and the Starcatcher, a hilarious and wildly theatrical prequel to Peter Pan. Running May 24 - June 2 at the NorShor Theatre, Rick Elice’s Tony Award-winning play, based on the best-selling novel by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson, upends the century-old story of the boy who wouldn’t grow up.

The whimsical, music-filled play begins with a band of orphan boys, one of whom was never given a name, being shipped off to a distant island ruled by the evil King Zarboff. On board the ship, the unnamed boy’s sad world is turned upside down when he befriends Molly, a quick-witted Starcatcher-in-training who possesses a mysterious trunk containing "starstuff.”

As they work together to protect the magical substance from falling into the wrong hands, they encounter a colorful array of characters – from marauding pirates to jungle tyrants to singing mermaids. At its heart, Peter and the Starcatcher is a thrilling journey through the world of make-believe, where unlikely heroes emerge from the most unexpected places. 

Duluth Playhouse’s production stars Jake Mathey as Boy, Hope Nordquist as Molly, and Evan Kelly as Black Stache. The rest of the ensemble includes Justin Peck as Smee, Alyson Enderle as Mrs. Bumbrake, Phil Hoelscher as Alf, Greyson Holste as Prentiss, SJ Olson as Ted, Jennie Ross as Teacher, Ian Wallin as Bill Slank and Fighting Prawn, Joe Meichsner as Lord Leonard Aster, and Chris Ibarra as Scott, Grempkin, Mack, and Hawking Clam. Enderle, Holste, Olson, and Ibarra will also play live music throughout the production.

"Peter Pan has always fascinated me. From the J.M Barrie novel, to the Broadway musical, and the various film interpretations - the story of the boy who never grows up has lingered with me throughout my life,” said director Phillip Fazio, who also serves as the Producing Artistic Director at Duluth Playhouse. “Peter and the Starcatcher offers audiences a supremely clever tale about how the iconic characters got to be the classic figures we know and love. This prelude unravels through the use of imaginative storytelling that will create a lasting theatrical experience."

Featuring a dozen actors portraying more than 100 unforgettable characters, Peter and the Starcatcher uses ingenious stagecraft and the limitless possibilities of imagination to entertain audiences of all ages.