Disney’s Mulan JR a celebration of courage and culture

By UW-Marshfield/Wood County

Mulan JR cast rehearses

The Huns have invaded China and it’s up to misfit Mulan and her mischievous sidekick Mushu to save the Emperor in this Continuing Education production.  “Disney’s Mulan JR” runs August 14-15 at 7:30 p.m. and August 16 at 2 p.m. in the Helen Connor Laird Theater at UW-Marshfield/Wood County.

“Mulan JR,” adapted from the Disney film, blends fantasy with historical times showcasing many of the same loveable characters and familiar songs such as “Reflection” as well as new songs. Set in ancient China, the story begins with Mulan's big day with the village Matchmaker.  Though she tries, she doesn’t meet the Matchmaker’s standards and dishonors her family. When Mulan’s father is unexpectedly called to the army she goes in his place, running away from home, stealing his helmet and sword and dressing as a boy.

In past CE productions Director Donna Thompson cast females in male roles when necessary.  For Mulan, she wanted to keep the army strictly male to stay true to the ideals of the story.  “The whole idea of Mulan being a girl in the male Chinese army—the dishonor of her actions—would be less impactful if other soldiers were played by females,” she said.

The cast is a mix of rookies and veterans with ages ranging from 10 to 17-years-old.  During rehearsal, the more seasoned cast members help out the younger actors and actresses to learn lines and cues as well as finding the right place on stage during scenes and choreography.

Mulan struggles to find where she fits in and tries to balance her family’s expectations and traditions while finding her own path.  “I think people of all ages will enjoy this production.  The music is fun, yet beautifully arranged.  The characters are creatively developed and well-written, and the underlying message is one that still relevant today,” Thompson said 

Experience the adventure when you support the tradition of community theatre arts by attending a performance.  Tickets are $10 and can be purchased online at marshfield.uwc.edu or by phone at the Campus Box Office at 715-389-6534. VISA, MasterCard and Discover are accepted.

This production is made possible through support of the Laird Fund for the Arts.  “Disney’s Mulan JR” is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI).



Stacey Oelrich