November is the month when kids start spending every sunlit hour — when there is any sun — at school, getting up and getting home in the dark. It’s tempting to hole up in the house, venturing out only for soccer practice. But it’s too early to hibernate. From magical musical theater to a global dance party, here are five top family-friendly arts events (and a bonus) to brighten your November.
“Howl’s Moving Castle”
Book-It Theatre’s original adaptation of the children’s fantasy novel “Howl’s Moving Castle” was a big hit in 2017, selling out most of its run. Now writer-director Myra Platt and composer and lyricist Justin Huertas have paired with arranger Steven Tran to present a whole new design concept for the play.
“Howl’s castle is constantly moving,” said Platt, “and it just begs the imagination to reinterpret it.” The outline of the story about Sophie, who is turned into an old woman and forced into adventure by a witch’s curse, remains the same. But the telling is tighter now, with a smaller cast and some different songs. (Don’t worry, it still includes the delightful song “Cake.”)
“This time there is a much darker sense of the danger for the young girls who go out in the world to find their way. People who went before will still recognize it, they’ll remember things, but it will feel very fresh and new,” said Platt.
Nov. 29-Dec. 29; Book-It Repertory Theatre at Seattle Center Armory, 305 Harrison St., Seattle; $26-$50, students $20; 206-216-0833, book-it.org
For some truly all-ages theater, Seattle Children’s Theatre presents “Corduroy,” adapted from the picture book by Don Freeman. In it, beloved teddy bear Corduroy explores a department store, leaving behind messes for the night watchman to discover. Elsewhere, a young girl dreams of bringing home a new teddy bear.
Nov. 21-Dec. 29; Charlotte Martin Theatre, 201 Thomas St., Seattle; $15-$50; 206-441-0442, sct.org
Kids today don’t make the same distinction between fine arts and fandom as previous generations did. GeekGirlCon is a two-day convention that celebrates STEM (science, technology, engineering and math), comics, literature, gaming and all things geeky. Specifically founded to support women and girls, GeekGirlCon is an inclusive space for introducing kids to nerd culture where they can meet some of their favorite creators and maybe even reprise Halloween as cosplay.
Nov. 16-17; The Conference Center, across the street from Washington State Convention Center, 800 Pike St., #804, Seattle; $25-$335, kids 5 and under free; email@example.com, geekgirlcon.com
Global Party is an energetic, multicultural celebration of dance and music with both youth and adult performers, produced by STG Education & Community Programs. See Indian classical and Bollywood dance, Korean traditional dance and K-pop, as well as Peruvian folk dance and Northwest Tap Connection performances. Through dance, families can learn about and celebrate the cultures that make up our community.
Nov. 15; Moore Theatre, 1932 Second Ave., Seattle; $10; 800-982-2787, stgpresents.org
You might already be planning to see Seattle Art Museum’s exhibit “Flesh and Blood: Italian Masterpieces from the Capodimonte Museum.” While you’re there (or if it’s a little too graphic for your family), turn your attention to “Storied Objects.” A small new exhibition in the third-floor galleries, “Storied Objects” shows mostly three-dimensional works that contain some sort of narrative. Kids will especially like James Washington Jr.’s granite animals.
Opens Nov. 23; Seattle Art Museum, 1300 First Ave., Seattle; $30 adults, $20 teens, free for those 14 and under; 206-654-3100, seattleartmuseum.org
Bonus: NaNoWriMo Young Writers Program
Art is not just for consumption, it’s something you create yourself. November is National Novel Writing Month, and kids can get in on the fun, too. A dedicated young writers’ web page lets kids set their own word-count goal and provides writing resources.
Nov. 1-30; anywhere with an internet connection; free; ywp.nanowrimo.org
This story has been updated with correct ticket information for “Corduroy” and GeekGirlCon.