Orlando Fringe Review: ‘Becoming Santa’

‘Twas the week of Fringe-mas, in the middle of May, “Becoming Santa” appeared, with tales of childhood beliefs to convey.

Starting in rhyme, “Becoming Santa” immerses audiences in cheerful holiday spirit as Bradley, played by Carlos Filomeno, struggles to find happiness during the season of giving. “Becoming Santa” is divided into short vignette-style segments with the lights dimming between scenes. A multitude of characters presented by Carlos Filomeno, Anna LeFlore, Amie McGaha, and Evan Leigh Rumler gave the audience a glimpse at moments when children and adults lose their faith in Old St. Nick.

Director and producer Mary Boatman explores families of multiple origins and backgrounds proving the real magic is within. Grail Schroeder’s Santa was incredibly believable and spot on, would land him on the nice list.

A heart-touching moment occurs when classmates tell one foster child that Santa does not exist, though his parents reveal a special gift: adoption papers. The joy on the child’s face as he realized he had found his forever home brought tears to everyone’s eyes, turning initial disappointment into an unforgettable celebration of love, and belonging.

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