LUMP brings “Charlie Brown” to the stage

Paul Karner

This weekend, Lawrence University Musical Theatre will present “You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown” under the direction of Lawrence alum Jacob Allen, ’05. With a sold-out show Friday, the musical is already slated to be a hit this weekend.
“It basically describes a day in the life of Charlie Brown,” says Allen. “The show takes the form of the comic strip, with its separate frames and short vignettes.”
“You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown” was written, music and all, by Clark Gesner and premiered in May of 1967. Gesner’s original score was for piano, percussion and bass, however in 1999 the show saw a revival on Broadway and was rescored to include a pit orchestra with strings and winds.
“The music contains everything from traditional musical theatre to more modern pop music,” stated Allen. While “Charlie Brown” has been performed at Lawrence in the past, this is the first time since it’s revival.
Becca Young choreographed the dance numbers in the show including the song “My Blanket and Me” sung by freshman Peter Welch as Linus and “Suppertime” sung by sophomore Stephen Christensen as Snoopy. “The cast is doing a great job,” Young stated, “and its just such a feel-good show.” The senior added how she enjoyed putting together the choreography and working with the cast in a lighthearted show like “Charlie Brown.” Other cast members include Mike Axtell, ’08, as Charlie Brown; Siri Hellerman, ’06, as Lucy; Brad Grimmer, ’06, as Schroeder; and Meghan Phillip, ’06, as Sally.
Though the play may be lighthearted, the cast has put some heavy work into its production. “It’s been an intense process,” Allen said of the two-week rehearsal process for the show. “It’s been harrowing at times, but we’ve made it through and it’s been a joy to work with the cast.”
Tickets for the matinee performance on Sunday at 3 p.m. can be purchased at the Lawrence Box Office. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students and seniors.