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Meet the cast of THE JUNGLE BOOK



A new twist on a beloved classic, The Rose’s upcoming show, The Jungle Book, promises to weave together several stories from the classic Rudyard Kipling novel in a unique and memorable production.The show will run at The Rose, Oct. 28 to Nov. 13, 2016.

The Rose is proud to announce the cast of The Jungle Book. Each cast member plays multiple parts throughout the show, transforming before the audiences’ eyes. Aaron Ellis (Big Nate, Jackie & Me) plays Mowgli, the young orphan raised by wolves in the Indian jungle. Rose artist educator Kevin Ehrhart (The Reluctant Dragon, The Cat in the Hat, Jackie & Me) plays Baloon the Sloth Bear. Baheera the Panther will be played by Joshua Lloyd Parker (Pete the Cat, Peter & The Starcatcher, Elephant & Piggie: We Are In A Show). Stephanie Jacobson (also a Rose artist educator) (Honk!, Ivy + Bean: The Musical, The Borrowers) will portray Kaa the Python, with Jonathon Smith (The Little Mermaid) playing the villianious tiger, Shere Khan. Rounding out the cast are Autumn Simpson and Madison Hoge, who play various parts, including Wolves, Monkeys and Vultures.

The show is being directed by guest artist John Hardy of Abingdon, Virginia. Hardy is an associate artist with The Barter Theatre who has worked around the country as a playwright, actor and director for more than 30 years. He previously directed Jackie & Me at The Rose in 2014, and has been featured in his one-man show at Joslyn Castle. Over the course of his career, Hardy has directed more than 100 professional productions, including Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Romeo
And Juliet, Henry V, Julius Caesar, One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, Tartuffe, Oedipus The King, Man Of La Mancha
and others. As an actor, Hardy has played many of the great roles including Hamlet, MacBeth, Tom Wingfield in The Glass Menagerie, Oberon in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Teach in American Buffalo and many others. Hardy recently returned from a national tour, playing George in Of Mice And Men. As an playwright he has had over forty productions of fifteen plays produced across the country and overseas. He recently received the Sara Spencer Award for lifetime achievement from the Southeastern Theatre Conference.

The Jungle Book tells the story of Mowgli, a rambunctious and curious, scrappy and kind child. This adaptation by Greg Banks finds Mowgli lost in the Indian jungle, where he is adopted by Baloo the Bear, Bagheera the Panther, and all the beasts who call the mysterious wilderness home. The fast-paced retelling is packed with adventure as Mowgli comes face-to-face with sneaky monkeys, noisy vultures and his mortal enemy: the tiger, Shere Khan.

The complete cast of The Rose’s production of The Jungle Book consists of:

  • Kaa/Narrator/Wolf – Stephanie Jacobson
  • Baloo/Narrator/Wolf – Kevin Ehrhart
  • Mother Wolf, Narrator, Monkey, Vulture – Autumn Simpson
  • Mowgli – Aaron Ellis
  • Narrator/Wolf/Monkey/Vulture – Madison Hoge
  • Bagheera/Father Wolf/Narrator – Joshua Lloyd Parker
  • Shere Khan/Narrator/Monkey – Jonathon Smith

The Jungle Book is recommended for families of children ages eight and up. The show runs Oct. 28 through Nov. 13, 2016, with performances on Fridays at 7 pm, and Saturdays at 2 pm and 5 pm, and Sundays at 2 pm. The show is approximately 70 minutes long without an intermission. On Saturday, Nov. 5, the 2 pm performance will be interpreted for audience members who are deaf or hard of hearing.

Tickets for The Jungle Book are $20. Discount ticket vouchers are available at all area Hy-Vee stores. Members of The Rose receive four free tickets to the production.

The Jungle Book is sponsored by Children’s Hospital & Medical Center, Nebraska Furniture Mart, Security National Bank, the Nebraska Arts Council and the Nebraska Cultural Endowment. Special opening night activities are sponsored by Kiewit Companies.


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