christmas_rabbitWhen struggling singer and mother, Leslie, tries to provide her children with a magical Christmas while teaching them the importance of family and being grateful for what they have, she and her daughters are blindsided when their landlord, Mr. Platter, shows up and tells them they are being evicted on Christmas Eve if they do not catch up their past due rent. Desperate to help their mom, Macie and Karie hop into action to teach Mr. Platter a crucial lesson about compassion, the bonds of family, and one magical Christmas rabbit.

The Wishful Christmas Rabbit was premiered at The Shadowbox Theatre before Christmas.

 

Blue Kangaroo presented the original family-friendly holiday production of the Christmas Rabbit. Creators Rebecca S. Mickle and Joey Ouellette created a delightful story with a significant lesson that should be presented every Christmas. Mickle showcases her full wheelhouse of skill by composing and directing the musical numbers, while also playing the lead role of Leslie. She plays the role with grace and perfectly portrays this sympathetic character. Joey Ouellette provided capable directional skill as well as showed off his acting chops with our main antagonist. Mr. Platter is so well rounded as a disgruntled landlord and shares comical vocals, as well as a surprisingly warm heart. Chloe Roy-Stansfield and Brianna Morneau play the roles of Leslie’s daughters, Macie and Karie, and do so in a wholesome and playful way sharing wonderful on-stage chemistry with the entire cast.

The set was very simple but effective. Half of the stage was Leslie’s apartment that consisted of a bed and a Christmas tree. The other half represented Mr. Platter’s apartment which consisted of a chair, a side table, and notes of the tenants rent. The lighting was facile, effectual and stayed consistent. The original musical numbers were well composed and added emotional layers to the story. There was a point where Leslie was singing Christmas carols and encouraged the crowd to sing along with her, which built on that extra special touch of Christmas joy. The costuming was standard, consisting of basic looks but it furthered the story in representing a family that is struggling. Generally, it was a very basic set up but it did not dampen the production or the story that was being told.

Overall, The Wishful Christmas Rabbit was a delightful production that taught its young audience an important message about the true meaning of Christmas and what it means to truly be grateful for your loved ones and what you have, not what you are being given. It teaches you that Christmas is not about gifts, but that the most valuable gift is love and family. At a few points during the show the cast stumbled on timing of the songs but played it off well and did not let it impact the production as a whole or the pace of the show. The acting was skillful, and the singing was beautiful. The story was endearing, engaging, fast-paced and charming. I believe this story shares an incredibly important lessons for audiences of all ages and hope to see it performed every Christmas season.

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