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Posted: November 8, 2008 5:00 a.m.

Goodnight Moon

Newton County native stars in Alliance Children’s Theater production

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Little Bunny (Derek Manson) reads his favorite bedtime story in Goodnight Moon, the live stage play based on the classic children's book at the Alliance Nov. 3 – 16, 2008.

Both adults and children who have adored the classic children’s book for generations will love the warmth and wonder of "Goodnight Moon," a one-hour live musical now playing at the Alliance Children’s Theater.

In "Goodnight Moon," Little Bunny’s vivid imagination and energy for play make it impossible to go to sleep. As the dear old woman whispering "hush" tries to make Little Bunny settle down, the pandemonium of the Great Green Room, with singing and dancing toys, bears and tooth fairies, will not let him surrender to the stillness of night. Chad Henry adapted the book, music and lyrics from the book by Margaret Wise Brown and Clement Hurd that was first published in 1947 and has been enjoyed by generations of families.

Newton County native Derek Manson returns to the Atlanta area to star as the blue-pajama clad "Little Bunny."

"I get to spend the fall in ears and a tail," said Manson with a laugh, after coming back from a well-received preview performance. Children can be brutally honest critics, he pointed out. "You can’t pull anything on a children’s audience. They’ve very honest. They know what they like."

The production set, which rivals any he’s worked on in New York, brought the book to life and allowed him to play in a life-sized version of the book’s setting, he said.

"It’s always fun to come back," said Manson, a 1990 graduate of Newton High School who now resides in New York. "Atlanta’s always home. Being able to do a show like this affords me an opportunity to see friends and be part of my family here and be a part of great theater in this region. It thrills me to be able to come down and be a part of that." His recent credits include playing Mitch Albom in "Tuesdays With Morrie," and Albert in "Einstein is a Dummy."

Opening Night is Nov. 3, at 7 p.m. Public performances are Saturday and Sunday at 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. from Nov. 8 – 16 on the Alliance Stage. Tickets are $15 and $20 and are available at the Woodruff Arts Center Box Office by calling (404) 733-5000 or online at www.alliancetheatre.org. Discount rates for groups of 10 or more are available as well as for members of the military, seniors and students. The Alliance Theatre is located at the Woodruff Arts Center, corner of Peachtree and 15th Street in Midtown Atlanta.

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