CONWAY — Charlie Brown and all the gang will take the stage at The Lantern Theatre, beginning Friday, as the Conway Community Arts Association presents You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown, with music and lyrics by Clark Gesner.
Based on the Peanuts comic strip by Charles M. Schulz, the local production of Charlie Brown is under the direction of Jeff Ward of Conway, with musical direction by Mark Burbank, also of Conway.
Showtimes are at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and again April 26, 27 and 28, and at 2:30 pm. April 22 and 29. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children ages 5-12, when purchased online at conwayarts.org or thelanterntheatre.com.
If available, tickets will be sold at the door for $22 and $12. Student rush tickets will be available, if room allows, for $5 at the door. The Lantern Theatre is at 1021 Van Ronkle St. in Conway.
“This is a musical for the whole family,” said Ward, who has directed several productions at The Lantern and is vice president of the CCAA Board of Directors. “We have a lot of new faces in the cast with a lot of experience.
“Cory [Williams] and his wife, Rosalyn [Williams] are veterans of the Red Curtain Theater [in Conway],” Ward said. “Mark Burbank is assistant artistic director at The Studio Theatre in Little Rock. Seth Wilson is fairly new to Conway and community theater, and Haley Coughlin has worked with community theaters in Little Rock. Ike [Ferrell] is the only one who has been onstage before at The Lantern.”
Burbank is making his debut with The Lantern Theatre.
“This is my first time at The Lantern, but I have been involved in theater all over central Arkansas,” said Burbank, who is a 2013 graduate of Bryant High School.
“This is actually my second time to be involved with a production of Charlie Brown,” he said. “I played Charlie Brown at The Studio Theatre in 2014.
“This show is pretty much the typical cartoon everyone loves,” he said. “I’m having a really good time with this cast. I’m having a lot of fun.”
Burbank now lives in Conway and is studying theater at the University of Central Arkansas. He is also costumer for the show.
The cast includes the following:
• Cory Williams of Conway appears as Charlie Brown.
“This is my first time at The Lantern. I’m super excited about being here,” Williams said.
“I acted all through college,” said Williams, who has a degree in theater and communications from Arkansas Tech University in Russellville. “I acted with the River Valley Players while I was there. I’ve been in one play at Murry’s Dinner Playhouse in Little Rock and in a couple of shows at Red Curtain.
“Charlie Brown is the lovable loser. He’s super fun to play. I feel like everybody sees a little of Charlie Brown in themselves. He gets joy in the simple things of life. Despite all the bad that happens to him, he never loses hope.”
• Rosalyn Williams of Conway plays Snoopy.
Williams grew up in Conway and graduated from St. Joseph High School in 2011. She received a degree in communications and theater from Arkansas Tech University in 2014. This is her first time to appear in a production at The Lantern Theatre.
“I play Snoopy,” she said, smiling. “It is so much fun. I am trying to get inside Snoopy’s head … to channel Snoopy … as I prepare for this role.
“I did theater in high school and have performed locally with the Red Curtain Theatre.”
• Hayley Coughlin of Conway appears as Lucy
Coughlin teaches seventh- through 12th-grade choir at Lighthouse Charter School in Jacksonville. She has a master’s degree in music from UCA.
This is her first time to appear in a production at The Lantern.
“I keep up with them on social media and saw the audition notice, so I auditioned for this show,” she said. “My character is fun. She’s interesting and also a little crabby.
“I’ve appeared in productions throughout central Arkansas — The Studio Theatre, Weekend Theatre and Community Theatre of Little Rock.”
• Cameron Sellers of Bentonville portrays Sally Brown.
Sellers is a sophomore at UCA majoring in theater. This is her first time to appear at The Lantern.
“I am really excited about being here. I have done some shows with UCA Theatre and in Bentonville, but this is the first time I have acted anywhere other than school,” she said.
“My character, Sally, is very bubbly … a little girly-girl princess. She’s also an airhead,” Sellers said.
“I am having a blast,” she said, laughing. “I really like my character; I have always wanted to play this character.”
• Ike Ferrell of Conway appears as Linus Van Pelt.
Ferrell, who is originally from Alexander, is a graduate of Parkview Arts and Magnet School in Little Rock. He has been in several productions with Conway Community Arts and has done hair and makeup for several shows.
“This is my second time to play Linus,” Ferrell said. “My first time was with a small theater troupe, Theatre Soup, in Benton, which is now disbanded.
“Linus is like an absent-minded professor, really intelligent … a kid with a few slip-ups in common sense. He’s a fun character. He and his sister, Lucy, fight a lot, but truthfully, they love each other. He always believes Lucy.”
• Seth Wilson of Conway plays Schroeder.
Wilson graduated in 2016 from Ole Miss, where he studied linguistics. He is an event manager for medical, nonprofit organizations.
“This is the first time I have done community theater,” he said. “My character, Schroeder, is pretty pretentious. He’s cute … not concerned about what others think. It’s fun playing him.”
Sydney Stoner of Conway is the stage manager for You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown. She is a 2016 graduate of UCA with a degree in theater.
“This is my third time to be involved here at The Lantern,” she said. “I appeared in Stop Kiss and Craigslisted, but this is the first time I have ever stage-managed, ever.”
Shua Miller of Conway is the set designer for the upcoming production, and Josh Landers, also of Conway, is in charge of the lighting.
For more information on the Conway Community Arts Association’s 2018-19 season at The Lantern Theatre, visit conwayarts.org.