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Promo: Drama prepares for Spring Musical

“You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” brings comics to life

When you were a kid, you might have heard of or even enjoyed the animated shorts about Charlie Brown and the Peanuts gang. You can probably picture the round-headed Charlie Brown in his iconic yellow shirt with a single black zig-zag. This spring the drama class is preparing a special show that will help fans relive those classic comics.

Drama students help paint set backdrops for the upcoming production. (Giada Gilmore Young)

“You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” is a 1967 musical based on the characters created by cartoonist Charles M. Schulz in his comic strip Peanuts. The show comprises a bunch of small scenes stitched together with music and lyrics by Clark Gesner and (in a 1999 revision) Andrew Lippa. The musical has been a popular choice for amateur theater productions because of its small cast and simple staging. 

The Fresno Christian drama class has decided to do another musical after the success of the previous musical “25th annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.” Several of the student actors from that show will be seen again in this year’s show. A few of the minor roles are played by some middle schoolers who were specifically chosen to be in this class because of their acting ability. 

Director and drama teacher Susan Ainley is looking forward to putting on this performance with a great group of actors. 

“I feel great because we have so much talent,” Ainley said. 

She also spoke on how, when casting a show, she always sees the characters in specific actors, and ultimately hopes they will become the characters she envisions.

This show is new to most of the drama class, except the teacher and Sophia Adams, who has acted in this show before as Sally Brown. Adams is a senior and a veteran actor, she was Sally Brown in middle school and is doing it all again as a high schooler.

We’re reaching the point where we can just run through the show so I’m seeing it all come together, which is exciting,” Adams said. “At this point in rehearsals, we get to start adding little details and nuances to make the show even better, which is always my favorite part of any show.” 

Stage Manager, Meilani Gilmore Young paints tree for spring show. (Giada Gilmore Young)

This is important because she has the experience that the other cast members don’t have. Adams helps the cast with choreography and assists the other leads with their line memorization.

This musical has proven to be deceptively difficult to produce. The production becomes more difficult because the ages of the cast members are all teenagers, but the Peanuts characters are all children. The cast members have to embody that child, and that isn’t as easy as it sounds. 

Stage manager Meilani Gilmore Young, a senior at FCS, has been instrumental in making this performance as successful as it is right now. She helps with more than just props. Gilmore Young gives lines to actors who forget and even stands in if someone is absent. 

“As the stage manager, being organized is very important since I have to prepare the props and sets for several scenes at a time. I love my job as a stage manager, and I hope to continue with stage management when I go to college,” Gilmore Young said. “I am extremely proud of this show and it has been very rewarding to watch it come together over the past few months.”

This will be the last show for the graduating seniors in the class. Boomer Mericle, Sophia Adams and Meilani Gilmore Young have made a huge impact on the Fresno Christian drama community. 

Official show poster for You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown. (The Feather)

Our cast consists of:

Charlie Brown: Christopher (Boomer) Mericle 

Sally Brown: Sophia Adams

Linus Vanpelt : Noah Geil

Lucy Vanpelt: Maggie Phanco

Schroeder: Matthew Tacchino 

Snoopy: K’lanna McArn 

Woodstock: Olivia Saldivar, Madelyn Lopes 

Stage manager: Meilani Gilmore Young

PigPen: Zachary Paredes 

Violet: Brooke Cox 

Peppermint Pattie: Lily Montes de Oca

Marcie: Lilia Israelyan 

Shermy: Joshua Schwandt 

“You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” will be performed on May 2, 3, and 4, at Redemption Bible Church. The show starts at 7 pm, there will also be one matinee show on Saturday, May 4. Tickets can be purchased online or at the door on show night. 

For more from the Feather, visit Roger Rocka’s presents Beautiful: The Carole King Musical or Journalism team wins national award

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About the Contributors
Noah Geil
Noah Geil, Video Journalist
Noah Geil, 25‘, is a junior at Fresno Christian Schools, Geil works with The Feather at school and this is his first year working with this team. He really enjoys acting whether it's live or taped. He joined the team to learn more about the art of media. He looks forward to learning more about videography.
Giada Gilmore Young
Giada Gilmore Young, Photojournalist
Giada Gilmore Young sprints through life with a camera in her hand. She is a freshman at Fresno Christian Schools and a first-year photojournalist on the Feather. Gilmore Young owns her own business called Interwoven, which sells creative and upcycled goods. She plays piano for the worship team, runs Track & field and Cross Country, and serves as a student leader.
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