Playcrafters presents, ‘You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown’
Who doesn’t know good ol’ Charlie Brown? The lovable lead character of cartoonist Charles M. Schulz’s Peanuts has made the leap from comic strip character to an iconic household name over the years, and this season he’s making a stop on the Playcrafters’ stage along with his five friends for a two-hour musical comedy review of his life straight from the funny papers.
The stage production is comprised entirely of vignettes. “Some are very short and the longest is no more than five minutes,” said Director Randall King, retired music/ fine arts educator and professional musician, who is no stranger to community theatre. “They continue throughout the show; there’s no particular story line, just a lot of Peanut’s comic strips.”
The original production in 1967 was born through the collaborative effort of the actors, who took to the stage initially without a script and essentially winged it with just the songs and their creativity. They portrayed the characters through their own concept of how it should be done.
“We’re doing the off Broadway version,” said King, who described the success of the original 1967 run. “The music is simple, charming and child-like. We wanted to keep the intimacy and charm of the original show. There’s a second, revised (Broadway) version that came out later that lost its charm. Most community groups choose to do the revised version, but I like the simplicity and charm.”
This production of “You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown” lasted 1,597 performances, closing on February 14, 1971 and, later, had several revival tours.
Charlie Brown is played by Jason Schaum; Lucy, Caitlyn Colgan; Snoopy, Nicholas Gahman; Linus, Nikki Bromberg; Patty, Mara Felice; and Schroeder, Sean Collins.
“The challenge is that we have adults playing children…in addition, we have characters that everyone knows. The challenge is to (portray) the original character traits that Charles Schulz put on paper after all these decades,” King added.
Do you remember Snoopy and the Red Baron? Lucy’s psychiatric booth? Schroder’s piano? The Peanuts comic strip comes to life in this tuneful and memorable look at these timeless characters who all, deep down, have a true fondness for each other. Join us as Charlie Brown and his crew entertain the entire family!
Director, Randall King; Assistant Director and Producer, Michele Loor Nicolay; Stage Manager, Joe Welsh; Sound, Chris Stewart; Lighting Design, Ryan Kadwill; Light Board Operator, Mark Glicksman; Choreographer, Jennifer Wilkinson; Costumes, Diane Van Hekken; BOD Advisor, Sherry Yerger. Musicians: Flutist, Karri Giamporcaro; Bassist, David Deratzian; Percussionist, Robin Danels; Piano/keyboard, Jeff Wilson.
Playcrafters presents, “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown,” at the Barn, 2011 Store Road at Skippack Pike, Skippack. Remaining performances are Nov. 10, 15, 16, 17 at 8 p.m., and Nov 11 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $17 at www.playcrafters.org or call 610584-4005.