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TV REVIEW : 'Mister Rogers' Helps Kids Deal With Anger

October 16, 1995|LYNNE HEFFLEY | TIMES STAFF WRITER

"What do you do with the mad that you feel?" If you're longtime children's television friend Fred Rogers, you answer that question for your preschool audience with visits to renowned artist Red Grooms, the hip young cast of the explosive dance hit "Stomp," young music students, a teen-age athlete in a wheelchair, a pal who swims and your puppet alter egos in the Land of Make Believe.

The result is an entertaining, thoughtful week of new "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood" programs, beginning today as part of public television's weeklong "Act Against Violence" outreach effort.

Throughout the week, peeved puppet Lady Elaine stirs up emotion in the Land of Make Believe with her frustrated artistic ambitions, until her friends show her positive ways to vent anger.

Each day brings a raft of ideas to get rid of the "mad that you feel," from dancing and jumping to pounding clay and playing music.

The best moment for adults is Rogers' visit with the "Stomp" cast as they rehearse some of their remarkable percussive routines using brooms, pipes, pails and trash cans. Rogers' delight in watching and participating is matched by the cast members' delight in meeting a childhood icon.

* "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood" airs weekdays at 8:30 a.m. on KCET-TV Channel 28.

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