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By The Skanner News
Published: 14 June 2006

To help educate a new generation of youth, Portland General Ele-ctric has commissioned two plays for local schools.

"Vicky and Igor's Electrifying Adventure" is a program designed to teach students about safety with electricity.

"You Ooze, You Lose," teaches students about energy efficiency and encourages positive action.

"Often times, young people don't understand how electricity works," said Carol Dillin, vice president of public policy at PGE. "Teaching our customers of all ages about electric safety and the wise use of energy is a core part of PGE's mission. 'Vicky & Igor' and 'You Ooze, You Lose' are effective and creative ways to educate students and their parents about the importance of safety and resource conservation."

The traveling shows are produced by Creative Information, Transformation Education, a nonprofit, Portland-based organization that uses theater and music to capture the attention and imagination of audience members.

"Vicky and Igor's Electrifying Adventure" takes students on a journey with a young girl named Vicky Franquez and her cat Fluffy. Stuck indoors during a power outage on a stormy afternoon, Vicky uses her imagination to transport Fluffy and herself on an adventure. After transforming into Dr. Franquez and Fluffy into Igor, Vicky and her cat turn the living room into their "laboratory" and spend the afternoon learning about electrical safety. This 30-minute puppet musical program is performed for children in kindergarten through fifth grade. Since 2005, more than 29,000 students have watched "Vicky and Igor's Electrifying Adventure."

"You Ooze, You Lose" is a 45-minute award-winning educational musical theater presentation designed for students in kindergarten through fifth grades. In "You Ooze, You Lose," four professional actors bring comic book-style characters and puppets to life. The play's central character is Melvin Markham, a laughably clueless youngster who learns the importance of saving energy, water and the environment.

From the time Melvin pushes a button that activates a portal to the future, the production is education at its best, combining elements of humor, music and fun. Since 2002, more than 114,000 students have seen and learned valuable lessons from the entertaining, yet educational "You Ooze, You Lose."

During the two performances, students learn a variety of energy efficiency tips and facts including the difference between an energy-saving fluorescent light bulb and an incandescent one, alternative energy sources, why it's important not to leave the refrigerator door open and why recycling saves resources. Students are also taught the importance of electrical safety including keeping their distance when water and electrical sources are in close proximity,nottouching downed power lines and being aware of the dangers associated with touching or approaching power lines with toys. All students receive energy efficiency and safety information to share with their families.

PGE is sponsoring both plays to be performed free of charge at schools within the six-county area of Oregon that PGE serves. This opportunity is on a first-come, first-served basis.

To book a show or for more information, call Julianna Jaffe, of Creative Information, Transformation Education, 503-493-8070.

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