Oct. 27-Dec. 23
$36, $26 kids
Victory Gardens Biograph Theater, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave.,
When it comes to beloved bedtime stories, few can claim such
widespread affection as Margaret Wise Brown's classic, Goodnight
Moon. But fans of the 60-year-old story may be surprised to learn
that the tale has been translated to the stage at Chicago
After all, the story is better known for its gentle repetition
and intricate illustrations than its exciting action sequences or
elaborate plot. The play's director David Kersnar says the book may
take about 15 seconds to read, but there's a lot packed in its
"Every part of that book comes alive in the play," Kersnar says.
"There are a lot of implied stories."
Those stories, which include a story-within-a-story from Brown's
other boardbook hit The Runaway Bunny, are woven through the basic
plot of the little bunny and the old lady who wants him to go to
Favorite characters like the mouse, the cat and the fiddle, the
three bears and the cow jumping over the moon also make an
The whole tale is told through fun music by instruments such as
a singing saw and a ukulele, audience interaction, puppets and
"The bears are in this amazing tap number," Kersnar says. "That
number alone is reason to come see the play. …The way they enter is
Humor is a big part of the show, with Kersnar citing the
cow-jumping-over-the-moon sequence as laugh-out-loud funny.
But he also says there's a deeper message at play, one about the
fleeting nature of childhood and about enjoying the things around
you while you can.
Although the play is recommended for ages 3 and up, Kersnar says
it's really an all-ages show that parents-and even big sibs-will
enjoy as much as little ones. He hopes it encourages families to
pull the beloved story off the bookshelf and enjoy it together.
But Kersnar does have one caution for parents bringing little
ones in their PJs and hoping for an early bedtime: "This play will
not put you to sleep."
Elizabeth Diffin is the senior editor at Chicago Parent. She lives in Wheaton.
See more of Elizabeth's stories here.
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