Have you ever heard a clock sing? Peered into the eyes of a tea cup? Chatted with a candelabra?
More than 200 adults and children -- including lots of little girls dressed in princess attire -- enjoyed Disney's "Beauty and the Beast" Character Breakfast Saturday morning at Batavia High School.
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The breakfast was staged in the lobby of the Batavia Fine Arts Centre, the school's new visual and performing arts center that opened this summer. Two seatings at 8 and 10 a.m. included musical numbers from the production, as characters dressed in elaborate costumes made their way among the tables filled with wide-eyed children.
The nearly 90-mile drive to see the musical on Friday night and attend the breakfast the next morning was more than worth it, said Chriss Stump, of Kenosha, Wis., whose nephew Michael Gustin plays the role of Lefou.
Stump came with her husband, their twin daughters, who will turn 2 next month, and 6-year-old son.
"It was really fun. We love the theater, it's a family thing," she said, adding she was really impressed by the Fine Arts Centre. "We walked into the theater and I couldn't believe it. It even has an orchestra pit, it's so professional."
The breakfast fundraiser was hosted by Support Theatre Arts for a Greater Education, a nonprofit organization at Batavia High School. "We thought (the breakfast) would be really fun for the little kids," said co-organizer Suzanne Heronemus. "It gives families an opportunity to see the new facilities, and it exposes more children to the arts and the great work that our kids do."
"Beauty and the Beast," the school's first production, was sold out before it opened Thursday night. A Wednesday dress rehearsal attended by senior citizens was especially well-received, said STAGE President Steve Burrichter.
"I have been a theater director for 35 years, and I don't ever really recall a standing ovation that began during the last song," he said.
Alison and Victor Anderson, of North Aurora, attended the breakfast with their 3-year-old daughter, Emilia, 6-month-old baby Michael, and the kids' four grandparents. All had a great time, Alison said.
"It was a great fundraising idea," she said. "(The Fine Arts Centre) is really beautiful."