Vancouver-based nonprofit theater company is bringing the 1965 holiday classic to life
VANCOUVER — Christmas is on the horizon, and in the spirit of the holidays Metropolitan Performing Arts (MPA) will delight audiences with a production of “A Charlie Brown Christmas.”
Based on the beloved TV special from 1965, the performances will feature all the same iconic songs and scenes, as well as a cast-lead holiday carol concert. The cast of the play are a part of the MPA Musical Theater Program, and are young thespians entering the world of theater.
“It’s a very classic story. They’re fun characters for the kids to explore and create on stage,” said MPA Executive Director, Barbara Richardson. “Now that we’re in our new space, and we have our own performance venue, we’re going to be able to do more community theater shows. That was the struggle in the past and why we haven’t done one recently in the regular school year.”
Preview performances will be at the MPA theater in Vancouver from Dec. 5 through 7, with a 7 p.m. performance each day, and a matinee show on Saturday at 2 p.m. General and VIP tickets are available as advance tickets, and cost $12 to $14. All tickets can be purchased online at www.metropolitanperfomingarts.org.
The main performances will be hosted at The Brunish Theater in Portland. These shows will run from Dec. 13 through 22, also with 7 p.m. evening shows and 2 p.m. matinees on Saturdays and Sundays, but no evenings on Sundays. Advance tickets range from $15.75 to $28.50.
Richardson explained that there is no real difference between the preview performances and the main shows, but that the previews will be in Vancouver and are part of MPA’s ongoing effort to bring more community theater to the city and the county.
MPA is a, “Vancouver based nonprofit academy and community theater that offers professional, technique driven classes in acting, dance, music and tech.” The organization has a wide range of programs, including the popular “Re-Imagined Radio” which is performed at the historic Kiggins Theatre.
“I love how Charlie Brown isn’t your typical at Christmas hero. But yet, when we think of Christmas, we think of Charlie Brown,” Richardson said. “In the end, you know, it’s really about forgiveness, and it’s about community coming together and putting aside their differences. They might think this tree that Charlie Brown picked out isn’t the best tree, but they decorate anyway, and they sing a song together in harmony and peace. That’s what Christmas is all about.”
Tickets are on sale now, and the matinee performances have almost all sold out. The MPA Theater in Vancouver seats 100 and The Brunish Theater in Portland seats 146. Richardson said this is the first year The Brunish has been available at Christmas time, and thus the company jumped on the opportunity.