Fidgety Fairy Tales

Fidgety Fairy Tales

Fidgety Fairy Tales


Fidgety once upon a time RGB

…familiar fairy tales were re-imagined as delightful 40-minute musical theatre performances.  Fidgety Fairy Tales – The Mental Health Musicals use gentle humor, great music, and compelling performances by talented youth to raise awareness about children’s mental health.

National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day

with us!

Thursday, May 4 @ 12 – 1 PM
Children’s Theatre Company
Cargill Rotunda
2400 3rd Ave S • Minneapolis, MN 55404

Our NINTH original production features three new stories:

  • Humpty Dumpty (trauma)
  • The Three Little Pigs (anxiety)
  • The Ugly Duckling (bullying)


Tickets are FREE but seating is limited.  Reserve your tickets here!

This activity has been made possible by the voters of Minnesota through grants from the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.


What We Do

Our goals are to:

    • Provide accurate information about mental health disorders using clear, accessible language
    • Dispel the myths and reduce the fear and misunderstanding around mental health disorders
    • Portray the strengths and struggles of children with mental health disorders
    • Help families, friends, and communities respond with compassion, understanding, and support


Since 2008, we have had over 250 performances and reached over 35,000 audience members throughout Minnesota.

We have performed for:Little Hood Tidy RGB

  • elementary,  middle, and high schools
  • churches
  • community centers
  • libraries
  • malls
  • hospitals
  • early childhood family nights
  • art festivals
  • special Olympics events
  • children’s museums
  • residential treatment centers

We have performed at conferences and trainings for professionals:

  • National Federation of Families for Children’s Mental Health
  • National Conference on Advancing School Mental Health
  • Children’s Theatre Company’s Neighborhood Bridges National Conference
  • Minnesota School Social Workers Conference
  • Education Minnesota
  • St. Thomas University’s Education for Everyone
  • CASA MN (Guardian ad Litem Conference)
  • Minnesota Social Services Conference
  • Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Practical Review for Primary Care Providers and Mental Health Professionals
  • MACMH’s annual conference for professionals and parents
  • Anoka School District Paraprofessionals
  • Minnesota Division of Early Childhood
  • Minneapolis Early Childhood Special Education



Twenty-seven different fairy tales cover a wide range of children’s mental health disorders and concepts.  Scripts have been reviewed by mental health professionals, parents, and youth with mental health disorders.  Fidgety has been recognized nationally by SAMHSA’s Resource Center to Promote Acceptance, Dignity, and Social Inclusion Associated with Mental Health (ADS Center).  Fidgety has also been recognized as a program of high artistic quality through grants from the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, Minnesota State Arts Board, and the St. Paul Cultural STAR Program.

Mental Health Disorders

AD/HDEmperor RGB
Little Red Riding Hood (2008)

Rumplestiltskin (2013)

Rapunzel (2008)
Robin Hood and His Band of Anxious Men (2015)
The Three Little Pigs (2017)

The Prince and the Pea (2010)
Beauty and the Beast (2013)
The Little Match Girl (2014)

Bipolar Disorder
CinderEdward (2011)

Brain Damage
Jack and the Beanstalk (2012)
The Emperor’s New Clothes (2015)

Sleeping Handsome (2008)
The Snow Queen (2014)
The Princess Who Never Laughed (2016)

Eating Disorders
The Little Mermaid (2012)

Obessive Compulsive DisorderMillie RGB
Goldilocks and the Three Bears (2011)

Reactive Attachment Disorder
The Pied Piper (2013)

Snow White (2012)

Tourette’s Syndrome
Boyd, Who Cried Wolf (2011)

Hansel and Gretel (2010)
Humpty Dumpty (2017)

Mental Health Concepts

The Ugly Duckling (2017)

Collaborative Problem Solving
The Frog Prince (2010)

Coping with Grief
The Myth of Demeter and Persephone (2015)

Objects of Inspiraton (Disablism)
Brave Tailor Little (2016)

Sensory Processing
The Sensational Hercules (2016)

Bluebeard (2015)

Creative Team

Matt Jenson – Playwright/Co-Director In addition to being the Director of Arts Programming at MACMH, Matt is also a Teaching Artist at the Childen’s Theatre Company and was a faculty member of the University of Minnesota Department of Theatre Arts and Dance for fourteen years.  His work has been supported by the McKnight Foundation, the Minnesota State Arts Board, and the Jerome Foundation.

Marya Hart – Composer/Lyricist/Co-Director Marya Hart is a composer, pianist and music director, specializing in vocal and theatrical music.  After many years in blues, jazz and western swing bands and extensive work as a theatre music director and pianist, she began serious composition in 2005 and has since created eight major music theatre pieces in addition to incidental music, religious and secular songs, and a continuous stream of music for students at Children’s Theatre Company in Minneapolis, where she is a teaching artist.

Fidgety in the News

MinnPost – “Fidgety Fairy Tales use song and dance to humanize mental disorders for adults and children.”

Kare 11 – “Fairy Tales Helping Reduce Mental Illness Stigma”

Psychiatric News – “Kids Learn What Can Follow `Once Upon a Time…'”

Minneapolis Star Tribune – “A New Take on Fairy Tales”

Insight – Lee Valsvik’s radio interview with director Matt Jenson and actor Jared Smith

For more information about attending a performance, booking a show, or producing your own version of “Fidgety Fairy Tales,” please contact Matt Jenson at or 651-644-7333.

All photos by V. Paul Virtucio

This activity has been made possible by the voters of Minnesota through grants from the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund, the Minnesota State Arts Board, and Target Stores

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