Clarence St Theatre is kicking off the school holidays with an absolute treat. The international touring production of Dr Seuss' Cat in the Hat opens its next New Zealand-wide tour in Hamilton on Saturday July 4.

During the Covid-19 level 3 lockdown, Showcase Entertainment Group shipped the iconic set and costumes from Australia to Hamilton hoping the Covid-19 curve would be flattened enough to start touring the show.

"It's time to celebrate New Zealand's unique situation of being back open for business and give our kids some fun," said executive producer Layton Lillas.

"2020 has been brutal for the entertainment industry and the world alike. Lockdown was hard enough psychologically for adults with so much uncertainty but spare a thought for our children who went through it as well."

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International touring production opens in Hamilton. Photo / Supplied
International touring production opens in Hamilton. Photo / Supplied

The team behind Cat in the Hat crossed their fingers that the Government announcement on June 8 would allow them to go ahead with a season, and in anticipation they assembled a Kiwi cast and crew.

Thankfully the news was exactly what they had hoped for, so rehearsals started immediately.

Children and adults are likely to be left in raptures by this zany and imaginative stage show that brings the Cat in the Hat story to life.

The show last toured New Zealand in 2018, and last year played across Australia to sold-out venues.

The Covid-19 crisis shelved plans for the April 2020 tour back on this side of the Tasman.

"We are fitting six months of preparation into three weeks, but everyone is looking forward to the challenge of getting the show on the road," said Lillas.

Clarence St Theatre's general manager Jason Wade is delighted the theatre can officially reopen.

"We are thrilled to be in a position to welcome audiences back. The revenue lost during the shutdown was well into six figures, and we have taken a massive hit," he said.

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"We spent a lot of time on Zoom during the lockdown with other trust-owned venues such as The Meteor and Riverlea Theatre to forge a plan for restarting our varied and vibrant venues," said Wade.

Tickets are available at www.ticketek.co.nz
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