Miss Nelson is Missing!
Adapted from the book by Harry Allard and James Marshall
Book, Music & Lyrics by Joan Cushing
Commissioned by: Imagination Stage Bethesda, MD
World Premiere: November 10, 2001 – January 13, 2002

Highlight: Winner, 2002 National Children's Theatre Festival

                       National Tour, Omaha Theatre Co. for Young People

Representation BY: The Susan Gurman Agency

Synopsis  |   Production History  |   Production Photos  |   Song Samples  |   Quotes  |   REVIEWS
What the critics are saying:
“A gifted playwright and composer, Ms. Cushing has created a musical that will charm anyone who has ever sat in front of a schoolteacher’s desk – or, for that matter, behind it.”
  – New York Times
“Miss Nelson Is Here! Joan Cushing, onetime queen of topical revues, trades political satire for (a) full-blooded, hour long children’s musical. With a script and lyrics that often quote the book’s text, Cushing adds her trademark seasoning. Vice President Cheney and New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani in a musical for little kids? Oh sure.”
  – The Washington Post
“A beloved teacher, Miss Nelson , and her alter ego, the mean and snarly Miss Viola Swamp, are the subject of a joyous musical, full of bounce and fun, featuring Joan Cushing’s pun-der-ful music and script."
  – The Washington Times
“The world premiere of this bright and lively musical for child audiences should be the start of a long life for the play. It is filled with the kind of material kids enjoy, adults endorse and theater folk like to do. Don’t take my word for it - Scott from Mrs. Kiser’s 2nd Grade Class at Greenwood Elementary School says ‘it was better than the book"
  – Potomac Stages
“A genuine romp, lively and funny, propelled by delightful songs, daffy choreography, and vivid characters... Cushing’s wonderful script will have older children and adults chuckling, as well."
  – Omaha World Herald
“How many kids can you pack into a theater? Apparently a lot. And they like bouncing around and shouting out loud to this hilarious live-action musical. ‘Miss Nelson is Missing!’ is neither serious nor deep, but it’s a fun show and you’ll be grinning from ear to ear even if you’re surrounded by a bunch of six year olds...As it turns out, the musical is a lot more modernized than the original text, and works for adults as well as children. When Miss Nelson asks, “Who is the President of the United States? one kid answers, ’Arnold Schwarzenegger!’ another, ‘Howard Dean!’...Viola Swamp’s homework assignment had the audience in stitches."
  – The Dartmouth News

“Cushing brings her talent for entertainment and comedy to Miss Nelson Is Missing with original songs and a whimsical script that appeals to adults as well as children....If all of its projects are of the same caliber as Miss Nelson, Imagination Stage will surely become a premier center for children in the arts in this region."
  – The Journal
“For ten years, Cushing and her satirical revue, Mrs. Foggybottom & Friends!, aimed their political and cultural barbs at Washington, D.C.’s movers and shakers. But lately, Cushing has shifted her focus, first to full length musicals, and, most recently, to children’s theatre... In adapting Miss Nelson Is Missing!, Cushing has written a sly and witty script, with eight terrific songs...When Miss Nelson vanishes, the substitute who arrives to replace her takes no prisoners, and assigns homework from hell!”
  – WTOP Radio’s Metro Connection
“Joan Cushing’s lively schoolroom musical comedy at the Omaha Theater Company for Young People is just about perfect as a comedy-musical for school-age children - a genuine romp, lively and funny, propelled by delightful songs, daffy choreography, vivid characters, and the sure hand of director James Larson, who turns it into hard-driving, fast-moving entertainment (which is why it will tour to 80 cities)...With lots of skits and songs, jokes and shtick, the result is a lot of show packed into one hour. Calibrated for preteens, 7 to 12, Cushing’s wonderful book, music and lyrics will have older children and adults chuckling, as well."
  – The Omaha World Herald
"Adults not only relate to California Theatre Center’s production of “Miss Nelson Is Missing!” - they will delight in it. Joan Cushing’s clever and colorful adaptation of the book by Harry Allard and James Marshall is a joyous hour of zesty numbers, wayward pupils, and multi-role acting. In the end, Miss Nelson’s class has learned a powerful lesson in respect and appreciation...According to Director Gayle Cornelison, the real strengh of “Miss Nelson,” is not just its lessons but that “the playwright has captured the spirit of the original books, making a joyous hour of theatrical entertainment."
  – Bay Area Parent
“Cushing’s new musical, “Miss Nelson Is Missing!,” staged by the Actors’ Playhouse at the Miracle Mile Theatre, is a lively musical showdown for kids and adults of all ages. Winner of the Eighth Annual National Children’s Theatre Festival, the play faithfully recreates Miss Nelson’s unrully Classroom 207 at the Horace B. Smedley Elementary School...In their quest to find Miss Nelson, the once disrespectful students find themselves learning a valuable lesson."
  – Coral Gables News

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