Kids, don your creature power suits. The Wild Kratts are headed to Long Island.
Brothers Chris and Martin Kratt, hosts of the "Wild Kratts" TV show on PBS Kids, will be at Tilles Center for the Performing Arts in Brookville on Aug. 2 as part of their first live stage-show tour.
Chris, 46, and Martin, 49, live in Canada, where they produce the TV show, which is part live-action and part cartoon. The stage event will feature wildlife footage, the TV show's comic villain Zach Varmitech, and plenty of audience interaction. "It gets pretty loud and rowdy and fun in the theater," Chris Kratt says.
Chris -- the brother who is always dressed in green -- talked to Newsday about the stage show, which includes two 40-minute acts and a 20-minute intermission:
For parents not familiar with your TV show, can you describe it in a nutshell?
"Wild Kratts" is a show about animals and their amazing creature powers. In every episode we go on an adventure with a certain type of animal and learn about the amazing ability that that animal has. We start out as real guys somewhere in the world checking out a really cool animal. When we introduce that animal and its abilities, we ask the question 'What if?' What if we had the same creature power as that animal? And we transition into animation, and there's a 21-minute animated story. We have these creature power suits and we end up being able to use that animal's power in some sort of mission of discovery or rescue in the creature world.
Why did you decide to feature animation in the TV show?
There were always things about animals that we wanted to talk about, amazing things that you did, that you just couldn't show in live action. For example, a battle between a sperm whale and a giant squid. It happens so deep so nobody has had a chance to film it in real life. We wanted to show some of these amazing behaviors and the best way to do it is in animation. Also we're able to have really dramatic stories with villains and fun things going on in our animated stories. There's a few comic villains in the series. Zach Varmitech likes to make robots out of animals. Donita Donata likes to make fashion elements out of animals. She turns them into jewelry or furs. And Gourmand is an endangered-species chef. And of course we're able to have amazing inventions, mainly the creature power suits that give us the power of different animals.
What's the plot of the stage show?
In "Wild Kratts Live!" we start out the stage show demonstrating some of the amazing creature powers that our creature power suits give us. We're often asking kids to help us with things along the way. At the end of Act One, Zach Varmitech infiltrates the Tortuga HQ, our headquarters, and takes something very valuable to us, and in the second act we have to try to use creature powers to get it back.
Which creature power do you use to apprehend him?
We use some of our awesome Asian creature powers to get it back.
Will the audience see live animals on stage during the show?
There aren't live animals in the show. There's a giant screen where we see relevant wildlife footage.
What are some animals kids will learn about during the stage show?
They're going to learn about caracals and how high caracals can jump. They are the highest-jumping wildcat in the creature world. They can jump in the air and catch multiple birds in the air at the same time. They're wildcats from Africa; they kind of look like a cross between a cougar and a lynx.
Of all the animals you've featured over the years, which would you choose as a pet?
It may actually be an orangutan. These little orangutans are so intelligent and so gentle and sweet. Even when they're adults they seem to be really peaceful large apes.
WHEN | WHERE 1 p.m. Sunday at Tilles Center for the Performing Arts, 720 Northern Blvd., Brookville
FOR AGES 4 to 8
COST $35.50 or $80 per ticket
INFO 800-745-3000, ticketmaster.com