Monday, December 16, 2013

"Narnia," An Incredible Show

Last night we attended our church's production of the musical "Narnia."  We got there early for this last of six showings, as we were hearing of sell out crowds and long lines of waiting.  As I learned this morning, in spite of the biggest snowstorm of the winter so far that severely crippled travel in our area over the weekend, 3650 people attended this amazing performance.

Watching this show was truly like seeing a Broadway show without having to travel to Broadway.  Every part of this musical was done with such excellence, that it was hard to think of it as just some local church's yearly Christmas show.

Granddaughters Brianna and Tori with Aslan
For the audience members that were unfamiliar with "Narnia," the program offered this Plot Summary:

"The most famous story of the Chronicles of Narnia has become a musical presentation of this unique, enchanted world filled with creatures and spirits of myth and fable, both good and evil, dark and transcendent.

The principal inhabitants, however, are the intelligent talking animals ruled by the majestic King Aslan, the great lion of Narnia.  Though Aslan is often absent from the land (so that his very existence is doubted by some), he returns when the need for him is greatest.

C. S. Lewis' intention was to mirror the characters and story of the Bible as he penned the Chronicles of Narnia.  Aslan (Jesus), the innocent ruler of Narnia, sacrifices his life for the guilty traitor Edmund (mankind), fulfilling the demands of the Deep Magic (the Law).  The evil White Witch (Satan) forgets the most important part of the law though, and is shocked, along with her followers, at the great surprise near the end of the story."

Every part of this production was done with obvious excellence, including the set building, the makeup and costumes, and the acting and singing.  These cast members really brought their characters to life.

Work on "Narnia" began back in March of this year.  One of the early preparations included bringing in the head makeup artist from the Sight and Sound Theater in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.  He trained this cast and crew in the application of facial prostheses and character makeup, as the cast includes many animals and beasts.  I'll let some of these photos show you the intricate makeup and costuming that was involved:

The White Stag

One of the White Witch's followers - a Bat
Father Christmas

One of Aslan's Followers - The Eagle
Mr. Tumnus, a faun

One of the White Witch's wolves

Although pictures weren't allowed during the program, I was able to obtain a few photos from the weeks before the show, while the sets were still being built.

Here is a view in the distance of part of the White Witch's castle:

This next one shows work underway on the main landscape of Narnia:

Here is a partial cast photo.  In it you will see the White Witch (no longer in her "whites") and the dwarf.  I overheard some folks saying the dwarf stole the show.

All in all, it was an amazing show with an inspiring message, performed by a group of very normal people doing very exceptional jobs.

Thank you to the cast and crew for working so hard to make this story come alive for us in such an enjoyable way.


  1. Where the actors the stars or the twins?

  2. Wow - that's a pretty impressive production for a Church! My boys (and I) read the book series when they were in gradeschool, and we had the DVD of this movie, which we enjoyed many times! I'd love to see it live on stage!