Life on Noah’s Ark was a zoo, according to the characters brought to life by a Minnesota-based interfaith music and drama troupe in an original musical performed in Logan.
Prince of Peace Lutheran Church hosted the New Wine troupe, which took the audience onto Noah’s Ark to witness the struggles each animal character faced during their performance on Friday.
“All of these animals that were so very different from each other were forced to live in community,” New Wine Director Todd Mattson said. “I see that as a metaphor for our life together, you know, we’re all very different from one another and we’re forced to live in community together.”
The audience followed each animal’s journey from entering the ark to the voyage's effects on the individual characters to the ark landing on dry land.
“It’s basically about Noah’s Ark but from the animals’ point of view,” Jen Kiewel, a chaperone, said. “It’s funny.”
The audience was also treated to a total of eleven songs, although according to Kiewel, the majority of the students in the troupe are not theater students.
“A lot of these kids actually aren’t even in theater,” Kiewel said. “There’s a lot that are in choir.”
Mattson said he wrote the musical as a fun way to share a message of reconciliation and working out challenges. He said the musical and trip are also a way to help build the students’ confidence.
“It’s really a twofold goal,” Mattson said. “One is that they see that they can do things that they didn’t think they could do because the vast majority of these kids are not theater savvy or singing savvy.”
The troupe is composed of 38 high school students from five different high schools and 11 churches from St. Cloud, Minnesota, and they were traveling and performing in six states, including South Dakota, Colorado, Utah, California and Nevada.
Because they are traveling for 16 days in different states, local churches host them and allow them to stay overnight. According to Worship Minister Team Lead Joan Mahoney, Prince of Peace was the only church in Northern Utah to volunteer to host them.
Mahoney said the church volunteered to host them because they like to help interfaith groups and anyone in need.
“We enjoy doing community outreach,” Mahoney said. “We are about helping ecumenical groups, service groups and others when there is a need.”
After the performance, the audience members were able to talk to their favorite characters as the 38 students lined the hall.
“They love to talk to the audience,” Kiewel said.