Barbara Robinson wrote the book, “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever” in 1972. So… how come the first time I ever heard of it was last month when Aliesha auditioned for a part in her high school’s adaptation? I must live under a rock!
Come to find out…everyone knows about this wonderful Christmas story/play….except…me! There was even a movie made in 1983 with Loretta Swit. Never knew. And there are sequels…The Best Halloween Ever and The Best School Year Ever.
Oh well. I crawl out at some point. Sometimes it’s just every 40 years or so.
The story-line of this funny yet touching Christmas program is all about the Herdman kids, the worst kids in the history of the whole world! The Herdmans lie, steal, cheat and swear. They actually smoke cigars! Even the girls! Oh…and they take the Lord’s name in vain. The Herdman kids decide to come to church to partake in free refreshments and end up, all six of them, in the annual Christmas Pageant. Let’s just say the Herdman’s take over!
Aliesha played the part of Imogene Herdman, the oldest delinquent Herdman sister. Hopefully she wasn’t type-cast for this roll!
I was proud as any parent could be of of their daughter. Aliesha’s acting skills shone brightly in this play. She really did get into character. And I have to confess… she brought tears to my eyes when her character, Imogene, was holding the Baby Jesus doll and realized she needed a Savior. Sob.
Another surprise to me was the theme of this play was allowed in a public school setting. With all the anti-“Merry Christmas” and you must say, “Happy Holidays” sentiments buzzing around the Holiday Season like a snow flurry, I didn’t expect such a play presented at my daughter’s public high school. But I am very proud, honored and grateful that the director chose this particular play for the school winter production. Well done.