by Terry Weber
In a couple of weeks, The WordPlayers will embark on rehearsals for YOU’RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN. Excitement abounds. The director, music director, and designers have all been working enthusiastically and are chomping at the supper bowl (a little inside reference to the show there) to get started with our outstanding cast.
As a company of Christian theatre artists, we always strive to view plays through the prism of a Christ-centered worldview. How does that work with a show based on the PEANUTS comic strip by Charles Shulz?
Well, as a matter of fact, Shulz himself said, “I preach in these cartoons, and I reserve the same rights to say what I want to say as the minister in the pulpit.”
Robert L. Short, who passed away on July 6, 2009 at the age of 76, explored theological meaning in popular culture. In 1965, he published The Gospel According to Peanuts, which was the best-selling non-fiction book of that year. He followed up that book in 1968 with The Parables of Peanuts. Charles Shulz commented about that, “This new book is filled with wonderful quotes and is a real delight from beginning to end. I could not possibly be more pleased.” Finally, in 1990, Short re-visited his theme with Short Meditations on the Bible and Peanuts.
Hmmmmm…I think we need to get some copies of these books to have lying around the rehearsal hall!