Peter Pan Jr. vs. Disney's Peter Pan Jr.

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December 9, 2016
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What are the major differences between these two Junior versions? Is the Peter Pan more modern? My school is concerned about the depiction of the Indians in this story. Does the new version eliminate these characters or treat them in a more culturally sensitive way?
3 answers

May 12, 2017
I'm so glad to hear that your school has a concern about the depiction of the Natives in this play. I don't believe that our society is "ultra-sensitive" regarding race sensitivity. "Pirates" and "Lost Boys" are not a culture and therefore should not be compared to how the "Indians" are portrayed. Natives, as well as other cultures have been stereotyped in a very negative way for decades. That being said, I believe that doing this production also offers an opportunity to include the Native culture in a "more culturally sensitive way". Costuming & accents for sure need to be more accurate. This is a darling little musical, with fun songs, and many opportunities for a large ensemble. I am Native American, and plan on performing this production with my students. It will be a great time to bring in the concept of what is culturally appropriate and respectful.

April 17, 2017
The music is the major difference in the junior versions. One is the original Broadway score and the other is the Disney animated movie score. The depiction of Indians is just fine. I have done both versions and the "treatment" of the Indians has never come up. They are treated the same as the pirates and the lost boys-children's characters. It would be a shame to eliminate them due to the ultra-sensitivity that has permeated our culture.

January 14, 2017
Peter Pan JR is based on the Broadway musical (made famous by Mary Martin), and Disney's Peter Pan is based on Disney animated feature. It looks like Peter Pan JR includes the song "Ugh-A-Wug" and Disney's Peter Pan JR includes "What Makes the Brave Man Brave," so both involve the natives. You could always get online perusals to see specifically how they are portrayed.