Celebrating 34 Years of Magic: Cast of 200 Onstage in 'Ramayana'

WHAT: Mount Madonna School's 34th annual Ramayana!
WHEN: June 8 and 9, 7:00pm; June 10, 2:00pm
WHERE: Mexican Heritage Theater, 1700 Alum Rock Ave., San Jose  
TICKETS: All Seats Reserved, $35 Adults/$25 Children (18 and under)
                  Tickets on sale May 1 at: MountMadonnaSchool.org/ramayana  

What could be better than a story with a prince and princess in love, a fierce dragon, and a heroic rescue by an army of monkeys? Now in its 34th year, Mount Madonna School's (MMS) dazzling show is the longest running production of this timeless Indian epic in the western hemisphere, and an event for the whole family!

Enduring 2600 years as one of the world's most widely-read classics, Ramayana! [pronounced ra-MY-a-na] tells the story of Prince Ram, who, banished from his kingdom, leaves with his true love Sita and brother Lakshman to find a new home. The trio embarks upon an uncertain journey into the Dandaka Forest and beyond, encountering an array of magical characters, including: tribal folk and gentle forest animals, giants and wizards, heroic monkeys and bears, an enchanted golden deer, a kingdom of demons and a wild, fire-breathing dragon!

The June performances mark the third year of Ramayana! at San Jose’s Mexican Heritage Theater, an ambitious endeavor, and one that has allowed the School to introduce new audiences to the wonder of this unique theatrical production.

Mount Madonna School's show, a local tradition since 1978, features a cast of more than 200 student performers, from preschool through high school, accompanied by a choir and adult musicians. It is a story of love, adventure, separation and an eventual joyous reunion, in an ancient allegory of the battle of good and evil. The show is filled with exciting action, spectacular costuming, family humor and original, live music.

As the story unfolds, relevant, profound and subtle themes emerge—not only the power of goodness and the determination of love, but also the need for compassion to all beings. A rich performing arts tradition and integrated arts curriculum make MMS performances outstanding. Put aside any stereotypes of what "school play" might bring to mind—think professional quality, phenomenal, authentic costumes, staging, musical talents and dramatic accomplishment. These kids work hard—and it shows!

Bringing Ramayana! to life each year is a labor of love for the crew as well, with hundreds of faculty, staff, parents and volunteers contributing in myriad ways. This is testament to the strong volunteer spirit and community-building efforts espoused by the small Central Coast school known for strong academics, performing arts and producing volleyball champs.