Beloved children’s novel ‘Mr. Popper’s Penguins’ comes to life on Norton Center Stage

Published 2:33 am Saturday, March 3, 2018


Press release 

Direct from New York and London’s West End comes the smash hit Mr. Popper’s Penguins to the Norton Center’s Newlin Hall, Monday. With original songs and spectacular performing penguin puppets, this delightful, action-packed musical adaptation of Richard and Florence Atwater’s popular book is the perfect family treat!

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Painter and decorator by day, Mr. Popper spends his time dreaming of Antarctic adventures. He is astounded when one day a packing crate arrives on his doorstep and a penguin waddles out! The small town of Stillwater is a lonely place for a penguin, so the Popper’s soon welcome a companion penguin and before you know it, there’s little penguins running around. Hilarity ensues as Mr. Popper prepares the troublemaking penguins, portrayed by a cast of puppets, for a traveling circus act. But soon, he realizes that a circus is no place for these spectacular cold-climate creatures and he hatches a plan to make a new home for them at the North Pole.

This adaptionof Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Pins and Needles Productions, more closely follows the classic, Newbery Honored children’s book than the 2011 movie starring Jim Carrey with the same name. Whether very young, or very young at heart, prepare to be delighted by the 60-min production featuring original songs by Luke Bateman and Richy Hughes, performed by a dynamic cast.

“When I think of classic children’s books that remain as exciting as an adult as they were as a child, a handful of titles instantly come to mind,” said Steve Hoffman, executive director of the Norton Center.  “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Alice in Wonderland, Where the Wild Things Are, and A Wrinkle in Time were wildly fun, and still conjure up fantastic images.   Mr. Popper’s Penguins is another of those brilliant stories that I can’t wait to read again and again.  So, when we discovered that the story was transformed into a theatrical version, as a musical infused with incredible puppetry, we couldn’t wait to share it with our community.  This show transcends age and interest and brings out the wondrous kid in us all.”


“Mr. Popper’s Penguins” will be 7 p.m. Monday at Norton Center for the Arts. Tickets are priced at $28, $20 and $15 and available at or by calling the box office at (859) 236-4692.