Those of us who grew up on Tolkien are still reeling in satisfaction from Peter Jackson's spot-on mega-ambitious screen trilogy Lord of the Rings, and his take on The Hobbit looms with prequel-coda anticipation (let's just hope he doesn't pull a Lucas on us). In the meantime, Young Artists Initiative stages the adventures of Bilbo Baggins, with thirty young actors ranging in age from nine to fifteen, and a particular focus on puppetry (the dragon Smaug is rendered appropriately large and looming). It's definitely a show designed for cross-generational appeal, all about leaving the cozy confines of comfort for adventure and experience. With dwarves.
Fridays, 7:30 p.m.; Saturdays, 2 & 7:30 p.m.; Sundays, 2 p.m. Starts: Aug. 15. Continues through Aug. 24, 2008