Theater Review: Charlotte’s Web

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Nashville Children's Theatre brings a classic children's story to magical life on stage, Oct. 29 - Dec. 6. (photo credit: Dan Brewer)

Nashville Children’s Theatre presents:
Charlotte’s Web
(Oct. 29 – Dec. 6; All ages)
25 Middleton St., Nashville
615-615-252-4675 • nashvillect.org
Show Times: Sat – Sun 2 p.m.
Tickets: $$20 adults, $15 children

Charlotte_somepig_PHOTOCREDITColinPeterson

Shawn Knight as Wilbur. (photo credit: Colin Peterson)

Nashville Children’s Theatre (NCT) revives one of the greatest productions in its history with the magnificent return of Charlotte’s Web. Based on E.B. White’s classic — and timeless! — children’s book, Scot Copeland’s precise direction spins the beloved story of friendship and love into radiant life on NCT’s stage. Adapted by Joseph Robinette, NCT’s production beautifully captures the tale’s charm and innocence.

Jamie Farmer reprises her role of Charlotte, the gracefully speaking, web-writing spider whose kindness and dedication save young Wilbur from impending doom. Farmer provides a magical performance, dazzling the young audience along the journey. With the help of a flying harness, Farmer glides through the air from left to right, up and down with aerial flips and acrobatics as she performs Charlotte’s web-weaving work. The awe-inspiring effect produces many appropriate oohs and aahs from the pint-sized crowd as well as accompanying adults.

Shawn Knight also returns as Wilbur, and he again brings an effervescent amount of child-like whimsy and pep to the piglet he portrays. Knight’s delivery connects with children in the audience in a sincerely authentic, relatable manner.

The supporting cast includes Amanda Card as Fern along with David Compton, Patricia Taber, Brian Webb Russell and Eric D. Pasto-Crosby who each play multiple parts (townspeople and barnyard animals) with succinct enthusiasm and flair.

Taber is also the show’s costume designer, and she deserves many kudos for her exquisite work on the Charlotte costume; it’s dazzling in the way it aids Farmer in bringing Charlotte to life in an elegant, majestic way.

Charlotte’s Web has long been a favorite story among children, and for good reason. It’s a great story about the lasting power of friendship, and NCT’s production is a definite memory-making theater experience to share with your little ones.

 

Chad Young is the managing editor and arts/entertainment editor for this publication.

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