Flint School of Performing Arts

Flint Youth Theatre – A Fairy Tale Life: The Story of Young Hans Christian Andersen

Location:  MacArthur Recital Hall

Flint School of Performing Arts production

An entertaining comedy by Ernie Nolan

This enchanting narrative intertwines the biographical elements of Hans Christian Andersen’s childhood with his renowned stories, including “The Nightingale,” “Thumbelina,” and “The Swineherd.” At the age of 17, Hans, the son of a humble shoemaker, yearns for recognition, resembling a real-life ugly duckling who aspires to achieve fame. His initiation into school as a teenager is marked by isolation among classmates much younger than he, coupled with relentless bullying and mockery directed at the imaginative stories he shares.

The plot unfolds when Headmaster Meisling announces a contest for the student possessing the “most incredible talent.” Determined to win the coveted prize – a trip to Copenhagen – Hans begins crafting intricate paper cutouts. However, his creative process is disrupted by Edvard, the brightest student in school, leading to an unexpected friendship between the two outsiders. As their bond grows, Hans reveals the captivating tales of his past and introduces new stories he has crafted.

Just as Hans seems on the brink of a joyful resolution, Klaus, a bullying classmate, shatters his contest entry, crushing his dreams of visiting Copenhagen. Undeterred, Hans summons his confidence and creativity to construct a powerful and moving replacement entry, ultimately proving that the perceived ugly duckling is, in fact, a majestic swan.

This production promises a visually stunning experience, employing live actors, puppets, and captivating lights to vividly bring Hans Christian Andersen’s fantastical tale to life on stage.

Produced by Special Arrangement with THE DRAMATIC PUBLISHING COMPANY of Woodstock, Illinois

Genesee County residents receive 30% off – discount applied at checkout. 

  • Age Recommendations

    Family Friendly. Recommended for all ages. All patrons regardless of age, must have a ticket to enter the venue. 

  • Walkers & Wheelchairs

    Due to (firecode), wheelchairs and walkers are only allowed in the accessible seating area and cannot be parked in the aisles.

  • Security

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  • Policies

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  • Accessible seating

    MacArthur Recital Hall is a small venue with limited accessible seating. Please inform the Patron Services Representative of any special needs you or your guests may have while purchasing tickets. Accessible seating is available for the patron and one companion.

  • Walkers & Wheelchairs

    Due to firecode, wheelchairs and walkers are only allowed in the accessible seating area and cannot be parked in the aisles.

  • Service Animal

    Service animals are welcome in FIM venues. Please contact FIM Ticket Center for accessible seating locations available for patrons with service animals.

  • Unaccompanied children

    Children under the age of 13 must be accompanied by an adult.

  • Strollers and Car Seats

    For safety reasons, strollers and car seats are not allowed in the theatre.

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Monday – Friday 10am - 6pm
Saturday 10am - 3pm