By Tina Chadwick
Madeline, the tiny fearless French girl birthed by the imagination of Ludwig Bemelmans in 1934, comes to life on stage at Horizon Theater in Little Five Points. The story takes place in a French boarding school where all the girls, the cook, the teacher and a pet mouse all come down with the flu. Madeline, the smallest child, must play nurse to everyone as Christmas Eve nears.
A mysterious knock at the door turns out to be the pivot point where the somber holiday turns into a magical Christmas miracle for everyone. From the first defiant foot stamp of the feisty child, the performance is enchanting, funny and heart-warming all wrapped in beautiful songs and spirited performances. The sweet, real-life portrayal of the 12 students in the story — all played by young girls — compliments the seasoned adult cast perfectly. It’s this balance of wisdom and whimsy that makes Madeline a delight for any age – and a perfect quality family outing.
Madeline’s Christmas, directed by Spring Mason, continues through Jan. 2. For tickets and showtimes, visit www.horizontheatre.com.