Once upon a time I went to a show and it was called Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus. And they had different stories from the Pigeon books by Mo Willems. They had Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus and The Pigeon Wants a Puppy. They also had The Pigeon Finds a Hot Dog. They also had Don't Let the Pigeon Stay Up Late. That was cool. People love all the Pigeon books, so people want a lot of Pigeon books in the show. I know all the stories that Emerald City is doing as plays this year. I thought the play was really good, but it was a little bit more for littler kids I thought.
The Duckling was played by Daiva Bhandari. She had a funny line in the book and the play which was "Hmm. Needs mustard." And she did a good job playing the Duckling because she really acted like Duckling. She was very quick-talking and cute and sweet. When the Duckling was cutest was when she was writing all the stuff the Pigeon said with an enormous notebook and an enormous pencil--because she was a bird. She was also as funny as the Pigeon when she did the Duckling dance--it was hilarious and they played old-fashioned music. The songs were always funny and they were never sad or scary because the show was for little kids.
The Bus Driver was played by Bret Beaudry. He was the person that was always in every Pigeon book except for The Pigeon Finds a Hot Dog--instead there was a duckling. The Bus Driver was one of the serious characters except when he played the game-show man. Then he was really funny. The Bus Driver makes it easier to see how the Pigeon is not doing what other birds and people should do--they should give pieces of hot dogs to other people.
The Pigeon was played by James Zoccoli, we call him JAZ because I know him--that's how I know I call him JAZ. He did a good job playing the Pigeon. He just gave the play a lot of funny stuff. He wouldn't do anything at all that the Bus Driver wanted him to do. I don't do that to my mom, luckily. He loved to refuse stuff. Everything that he refused was something that was supposed to be good for him, like when he wouldn't go to bed. But I go to bed every night, but when I wake up in the night and I have had a bad dream I call my mom in to cuddle with me--or my dad if my mom is not home. The play asks you to do what the Pigeon is NOT doing. It is really kind of funny because everything that I really like to do is do everything that the Pigeon doesn't want to do. You need a driver's license to drive, and I never drive, but someday I will. But the Pigeon never will because he is a Pigeon. James looked like the Pigeon. The Pigeon's head is round and he looked like the Pigeon because of his head--because he is bald and that makes his head look roundish. They had this outfit for the Pigeon that looked like human clothing and also like Pigeons. JAZ is as funny as the Pigeon too. When he made the face when the puppy came out, it didn't look that scary to us, but because he was playing a part he just screamed, and that was funny. He was one of the funniest people in the show because the rest were more serious.
My favorite parts that were in the play that were in the book were the Duckling saying "Hmm. Needs mustard," when the Pigeon wanted to drive the bus and the Bus Driver would never let him, and the Duckling writing with the enormous pencil and notebook. The parts that were not in the books were the parts which were the game shows. It was funny how the Duckling was in all the game shows, and usually there are no game shows in the books, and the Duckling is not in most of them. She is only in one book. When they did the game shows it was kind of a little bit good because then it made the play longer and most people that went were older than what the books were written for. And it was kind of not a little bit good because it also meant that people that have not read the book will think there is going to be a game show, and they will get the books and realize there is not going to be a game show in them.
These are some of the stuff I think they should change in the play. They should get a bigger puppy that is still not a real one, and they should also get out the game shows. They should keep all the stuff that is in the book.
The people that would like this are people who like Mo Willems and people who like birds. You should expect a craft for the kids to do, but this time they don't let the kids do everything. It is a shaker that is a hot dog, and you can decorate it with stickers, but it sounds like you can only have one sticker. I think this play should be for ages 3 and up because there is no fighting or killing or stabbing and it is all the way funny. People should go see it because it is funny, and it is a good experience for little kids who don't know a lot about Mo Willems because then they will. It is a good adaptation of the Pigeon books.
Photos: Emerald City Theatre Company