Reviewed by Richard Lane
The kids cheered wildly, the parents applauded happily, the grandparents clapped politely and this critic LOVED it!
Under the astute direction of Fiona De Laine, the strikingly talented cast of thirteen to sixteen year olds pulled off a Fringe coup. It’s a 1967 musical by Clark Gesner based on characters created by Charles M Schulz in his comic strip”Peanuts.”
It is the kind of happy ,energetic “in- your- face” kind of show that could easily have got out of hand but Ms DeLaine kept strong control of her charges. There were two casts of principals doing two performances each who were then changed for the second cast, plus a resident ensemble of sixteen
The principals on opening night were Kyle Hall as Charlie Brown), Tayla Coad as Sally), Georgia Broomhall as Lucy, Laurence Boxhall as Linus), Benji Riggs as Schroeder. Ben Francis aged 13 in the plum role of Snoopy, with his powerful, true young voice and droll timing was a standout.
The energetic ensemble was a treat to watch. These kids were all uniformly brilliant in their respective roles from the wishy washy Charlie Brown to the crabby Lucy. Mark Steffanoff’s choreography was innovative and FUN! Ms de Laine’s mobile sets worked well and musical director husband Mark De Laine led once again led a neat little five piece outfit.
This was a top- shelf Fringe production highlighting the incredible talent we have in this city, both on and off stage