Category: After School Program

Posts related to BOM's Loyola Park After School Program.

Loyola Park Begins!

Posted by Philip on February 13, 2010

School Shows After School Program

Imagine a universe with no men, just women. And these women happen to be intergalactic emissaries of the planets of our solar system. They have met to discuss two important issues: they want something to do and they want something not like them. Eons pass as they experiment, creating sports and eventually creating…A MAN.

All of this from the imagination of a student in our after-school program at Loyola Park. Wowee!

I always love the Loyola Park show - the stories are wild, wacky, and not afraid to push the envelope. Luke gave a great opening speech about how many of these students have participated in Barrel of Monkeys for years, and that we should step up our game to show them something they’ve never seen before! This show has a set of stories in particular centered around a town…Singing Town…and vary from cats that write letters to the editor about why singing town is great, to a song written by Ricky about how we should sing ALL THE TIME and finally an incredible argument about how constantly singing is ANNOYING.

Plus, performing in our space at Loyola Park feels like home. We can add a lot of nuance to the show when it’s in an intimate space vs. a large gym where the acoustics can be tricky and we have to play big and large. It allows us to be subtle actors. There is some particularly subtle acting work being employed in a story about a lactose intolerant dummy in a land of cheese who goes on a rampage.

Stay tuned!

Arts and Crafts

Posted by Rachel on November 28, 2009

School Shows After School Program

The Loyola Park show brought out our artsy craftsy side! Sarah, the head of the after-school program made a wall display of all the fantastic stories kids in our program wrote this fall.


New Monkey Caleb and I adapted a story about a house that is “too small.” That’s Levy poking her head through the windows.


New Monkey Marla created this fantastic hamburger puppet—yes, that’s the Whopper Jr. who tries to warn JFK of his impending assassination. As you can see, the warning is for naught.


Lacy and Luke came up with the stagecraft to make these ghosts float with Caleb’s magician’s wand and then fly into his hat.


And Laura G and I made a story about a Gingerbread Diary! I made the cookies, and Laura made that teensy tiny diary—it even has a staple clasp to keep it private.


assassination day

Posted by Lacy on November 21, 2009

School Shows After School Program

Today, on the anniversary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy, I pose this challenge to all Barrel of Monkeys company members, ensemble, and fans:

Ask not what you can do to completely blow the mind of young authors, but what young authors can do to completely blow your mind.

Not so much of a “challenge” as a tastelessly-worded setup to this dialogue written by BJ at the Loyola Park Afterschool Program, to be performed at the Loyola Park show on Monday.
In the words of many pretentious Shakespearean actors: sometimes all you can do is get out of the way of the text.

Characters: John F. Kennedy

            Whopper Jr. (JFK’s Friend)

Setting: Burger King in Washington, DC

JFK: O my goodness which should I get Whopper or Whopper Jr.

WJ: John! John! Pick Me! We need to talk.

JFK: I get a whopper with onions so what do you want to talk about

WJ: I don’t think you should go to Dallas-something is wrong here. I don’t have a good feeling about this trip.

(They are off to the 1.5 million $ plane)

JFK: The whopper is good. I have to go. I feel you.

(They arrive in Dallas & get in the Rolls Royce)

WJ: John, be careful out there. I don’t want to have to go back to Washington without you.

JFK: I told Bush that I will be here.

(JFK is in the car, 25 miles away, waving to the people. 5 minutes later somebody shoots him and the car rushes to the hospital.)

JFK (cont’d): Take care of the country

(and about 3:00 he die)

WJ: John! John, come back! (with anger) I told you this would happen. (with determination) I will find the killer if it’s the last thing I do.

It’s happening at the Loyola Park show on Monday. I don’t think you’ll want to miss this one.

Mansions, Fire, and You

Posted by Lacy on November 21, 2009

That's Weird Grandma School Shows After School Program

As Thanksgiving approaches, I look forward to the sights and sounds of the holiday season, including cheaply made electric lights, dried brush and trees, and unattended candles, all warming my 900-square-foot condo.

Speaking of mansions, perhaps this is a good time to take a look at instances of devastating housefires in both That’s Weird, Grandma and the very exciting Loyola Park After School Program show, BOTH happening Monday.

In Grandma, we have “The King and The Queen,” in which Miranda, the young queen, has a bad morning, after which she “went outside, put the mansion on fire, and left the mansion burning to flames.”
Well. Heavens.
In an untitled opus by Jaerell, making its debut at the Loyola Park show, the lead character Kenny arrives home after winning a cruise around the world, to find his luck has come to an abrupt end: “when the cruise was over, Kenny called a taxi driver but when he got into the taxi Kenny asked the address the taxi driver said the mansion was burned by people just by accident.”

People, people.

Sadly, neither character recovers from the disaster or resulting homelessness (second lesson: MAKE FRIENDS WITH PEOPLE WHO HAVE SPARE BEDROOMS)  (OR AT LEAST A FUTON).  The narrator from The King and The Queen informs us that Miranda “was on the street looking for money so since she didn’t have food so she died,” while over at Loyola Park, “Kenny was shocked he became homeless by the next 100 days Kenny died of heart attack Kenny was 63 years old. Fin.”

Sixty-three. So young. And Miranda was only 25. Cry, cry, monkeys. Cry.

So, what have we learned?
Fire leads to starvation and cardiac arrest.
Kenny’s story has a surprisingly artistic/european end. Or maybe Jaerell was suddenly thinking about sharks?

Food for thought this Thanksgiving, friends.  I’ll mull it over while I decorate a fire extinguisher and arrange garlands attractively around our newly installed sprinkler system.

The calm before the monkeys…

Posted by Maggie on February 25, 2009

After School Program

I walked into the dance room at Loyola Park Monday afternoon around two o’clock.  It was dark, silent and still.  Only a few monkeys were gathered patiently near the stage left step of the stage, early for their call time.  The calmness that surrounded me was bizarre, knowing that in just a few minutes the room would be filled monkeys buzzing around singing, dancing and trying on funny hats.  And in just a short time after that, excited children would be coming in, anticipating what they were about to see, which of course was THEIR stories!

Sure enough, my bizarre feeling of what was to come did indeed become a reality very quickly.  May I present to you the 2009 Loyola Park Winter Show!

Monkeys showed up with crazy awesome props.
Funny hats were found.
The children arrived.

Then the zombies!


The cast was talented, the stories were amazing, the characters were so detailed.


Sadly, we are saying goodbye to one of our fantastic monkey performers.  Hopefully, he will come back to us soon, but for now we hope he can find funny beards on his future adventures!


We’ll miss you John!

Great show all!  Can’t wait to see the LP stories in TWG and COA!