Dec. 10, 2018 Staff Report
Join Snoopy, Pig Pen, Schroeder, and the whole Peanuts gang as they discover the true reason for the season.
“A Charlie Brown Christmas” returns to The Secret Theatre in Long Island City for 16 shows between Friday, Dec. 14, and Sunday, Dec. 30.
Back for the third year in a row due to popular demand, this family-friendly, 50-minute musical is an adaptation of the eponymous television special that first aired in 1965. However, it features original song and dance numbers and a score by Vince Guaraldi, a jazz pianist who composed the soundtracks for many Peanuts productions.
The story begins with a glum Charlie Brown. Despite all the apparent cheer all around him, he’s upset by the crass materialism that he thinks has ruined the December holiday. SIGH!
The Lovable Loser expresses his feelings to his sister, Sally, but she’s not having it. Instead of listening, she blurts out that she’s accepting cash instead of gifts this year. GOOD GRIEF!
Things get even worse when Charlie heads to Lucy’s outdoor booth for some advice. The young psychologist gives a thinly-veiled demand, emphasizing that she loves Christmas presents. RATS! But then Lucy demonstrates why her consultations cost five cents by diagnosing phobias and suggesting that her patient get involved in the annual school pageant.
Things get worse, though, as Charlie’s theater mates turn out to be more object-oriented than his friends. They even make fun of him for bringing a pathetic, spindly fir tree to the auditorium. AUUGH!!
Now at Rock Bottom, Charlie leaves school and sulks over to Snoopy’s doghouse, which is rocking bright lights, balls, and a topper star. As to be expected, Joe Cool has the best decorated pad for as far as the eye can see. Take that, Red Barron!
Seeing that his pet canine is in the spirit, Charlie starts to feel better. Then, his friends gather around as the snow falls and belt out a heartwarming rendition of “Christmas Time Is Here,” which purports that the true reason for the season is…love.
The show will go on at 7:30 pm on the following nights: Dec. 14; Dec. 15; Dec. 16; Dec. 19; Dec. 20; Dec. 21; Dec. 22; Dec. 23; Dec. 28; Dec. 29; and Dec. 30. There will also be matinees at 3 pm on the following afternoons: Dec. 16; Dec. 22; Dec. 23; Dec. 29; and Dec. 30. For tickets, click here.
Located at 44-02 23rd St., the Secret Theatre can seat roughly 100 people in its three-quarter-round performance space. It’s near the 7 train’s Court Square station. Parking is on street.
The original television version of “A Charlie Brown Christmas” was a smash hit when CBS first aired it on Dec. 9, 1965. It became a fixture on the channel’s seasonal programming and inspired other holiday-related Peanuts films, such as “Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown,” “It’s the Easter Beagle, Charlie Brown,” and “It’s a Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.”