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Happiness is…. Taproot’s “A Charlie Brown Christmas”



Erika Bigelow

 

Charles Schulz’ popular comic strip ran for 50 years. At one point it was published in 2600 papers, 75 countries and 21 languages. It’s safe to say that Charlie Brown and his gang touched all of us as we grew up.  After all, we’ve all experienced some Snoopy bravado. Or felt a need for security like Linus.  We’ve been left a little lovelorn like Lucy.  And we’ve definitely wallowed in the angst and insecurity of Charlie Brown.  These classic characters have stood the test of time, so when I saw that Taproot Theatre was taking on the beloved A Charlie Brown Christmas this season, I was nervous for them. Needlessly. Their production in one simple word: delightful. 

 

The set and costumes are bright, simple and recognizable. Snoopy’s dog house, Lucy’s Psychiatrist booth and even Woodstock are perfect. As you sit in the theater, you feel as if you have become part of the Sunday comic strip.  The show opens with Schroeder on piano and Pig Pen on Stand-up Bass and their live accompaniment carries throughout the many wonderful musical numbers. Physical comedy, (that of Christopher Morson playing Snoopy,) and sarcasm (Lucy’s tone captured perfectly by Molli Corcoran) abound as Charlie Brown works through his December depression surrounding Christmas commercialism. My 6-year old son belly-laughed several times throughout the show, but so did the 50-something woman sitting next to him. Taproot Theatre strikes just the right multi-generational chord and leaves you with the warmth of childhood memories wrapped up in a tale of the true meaning of the season.

 

The musical play is performed in Taproot’s new Isaac Studio Theatre, just next door to their original Jewell Mainstage on 85th in Greenwood. The lobby boasts the Stage Door Café where you can get a variety of beverages and cookies before the show or during intermission.  Parking can be tricky in the area, so be sure to allow extra time to find a space.  The show runs various days and times thru Dec 26th for kids ages 5 and older and their families.  There are, however, three special all-ages performances on Dec 19th, 22nd and 23rd. And the actors will sign programs and pose for photographs after those performances. The show runs 45 minutes long with no intermission. http://taproottheatre.org/charlie-brown-christmas/

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