Thursday, Jan. 28, 2010

Sunset Premiers Good Night Lulu

Stage adaptation of the popular children’s book opens tonight

By Russ Bickerstaff
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Seemingly endless military engagements overseas. Attempted terrorist attacks. The economy. The sorry state of health care. The final season of Lost. What with things being as uncertain as they are these days, any adult can relate to Lulu.  The title character of Paulette Bogan’s children’s book is unable to sleep. It’s the anxiety. Lulu the chicken is worried about the potential danger of bears, tigers and alligators. As a result, Lulu is unable to sleep. As much as Momma Hen wants to reassure Lulu that there’s really no danger of her running into any of those things on what must be a rather pleasant and thoroughly protected free-range farm far from the danger of such creatures, there are still concerns ricocheting around the darker corridors of poor little Lulu’s insecurities.

Presumably seing the obvious potential to reach both the book’s target audience of 4 – 8 year olds and their parents, Sunset Playhouse’s Education Director Erika Navin has adapted the play for the stage as a part of Sunset’s Bug In A Rug children’s theatre series. The show features songs written by Jason Powell, who showed remarkable skill as a composer of musical comedy with the recently-debuted Invader at the Alchemist Theatre. Goodnight Lulu stars Powell, Karen Estrada and Andrea Moser—all of the sketch comedy group The Show. At a wild guess, I’d say Estrada is probably playing the title character here. She has a brilliant sense of honesty when playing childlike characters. It’d be interesting to see her in the role of an anxiety-stricken chicken who can’t get to sleep. In any case, a children’s show featuring a cast entirely consisting of members of The Show should be a really good time for everyone involved. I’m sorry to be missing this one.

The Sunset Playhouse’s  Goodnight Lulu runs through January 30th. All shows are 10:30 matinees with an aidditional 2pm show on Saturday. 

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