Peppa Pig live show comes to Shippensburg
SHIPPENSBURG, Pa. — Two years ago, actor DJ Hersh had never heard of Peppa Pig, the British-import animated pig who has her own TV show on the children’s network Nickelodeon.
“I did a different show with this company, another kid’s show, and so I heard that they did Peppa Pig through that and then all of the sudden, everywhere I go, I’m seeing Peppa Pig everywhere. Like, you go into a bookstore, there’s little Peppa plushies, you go into a Walmart, like I mean, everywhere. She is everywhere,” Hersh said with a laugh.
And on Saturday, May 12, Peppa and company will be at the stage of the H. Ric Luhrs Performing Arts Center at Shipp for “Peppa Pig Live: Peppa’s Big Surprise.”
Hersh plays Daddy Pig in the stage version and said it was a lot of work, but a lot of fun to transform into the family patriarch.
“At first, it was a lot of watching the TV show, making sure that I have the voice down because he has a much deeper voice than I do, so I have to obviously modify my voice to make sure that it sounds like he does. And my director actually helped me a lot get into his mindset because at first, from watching the show, I kind of saw him as this lovable, bumbling fool. And I think he definitely does have a little bit of that in him, but my director kind of took me aside and he’s like, ‘The best thing about Daddy Pig is that he is kind of a bumbling fool. But he’s always trying to do his best and he so often gets it right.’ And I think that that really helped me a lot” Hersh said during a telephone interview from Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada, where the show was playing in late April.
Hersh also said the costume itself takes a little getting used to.
“It’s like a full-body suit that I have to get in from underneath, and it’s all one piece, and it’s surprisingly light. It sits right on my shoulders, the straps, but yeah, it’s really big. I feel like I look like Violet Beauregarde from the ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’ movie when I’m in it,” he said with a laugh, adding he is able to control his character’s arm movements from the inside and a camera helps him to see in front of him.
Hersh said the show is full of fun for its young audience.Actor DJ Hersh, 27, plays Daddy Pig in “Peppa Pig Live: Peppa’s Big Surprise,” at 6 p.m. Saturday, May 12, at H. Ric Luhrs Performing Arts Center. (Submitted photo)
“It features all the characters from the show that kids know and love like Peppa and her brother George, and Mummy Pig and Daddy Pig, and a few of Peppa’s friends. And in the show you meet Daisy, who’s a friend of Peppa’s. And Daisy invites the whole audience to come and spend the whole day with Peppa, where they go and play hide-and-seek, and they jump in muddy puddles, and they sing a lot of fun songs,” he said, adding that the surprise happens in the second act of the show.
“Peppa Pig Live: Peppa’s Big Surprise,” continues its run on the East Coast through Thursday, May 24, wrapping up in Clearwater, Fla.
Following the end of the show, Hersh, 27, will return to his home in New York City and his work as a server at Ellen’s Stardust Diner in Times Square, which is known for its singing waiters.
Hersh said he’s been acting since he was in elementary school, and graduated from American Musical and Dramatic Academy in Los Angeles with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in musical theater.
“Musical theater is definitely what I’m trying to do with my career and everything,” he said.
And for now, he’s doing just that as he continues to tour with the Peppa Pig production.
“The show is a lot of fun. The kids are always wide-eyed and dancing in the aisles, there’s a lot of fun songs, a lot of audience interaction, and people’ll have a great time if they come,” he said.