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Arts and Culture

Food Comes Alive for Charity in 'The Night Kitchen'

Jessica Burstein
"Pasta Nostra" in "The Night Kitchen."

Americans of a certain age will remember Slim Goodbody, a man in a unitard painted with internal organs who appeared on Captain Kangaroo and other programs as an advocate for good nutrition.

The man in the costume is John Burstein, who now lives in Lincolnville and still takes the character on tour promoting good health. Burstein has also created a new musical comedy currently running at Portland Stage.

In “The Night Kitchen,” the pots and pans, wine and cheese, and knives and spatulas come alive after the chefs have left for the evening.

“The Night Kitchen” was born from a sketch created a few years ago as part of local fundraiser for Meals on Wheels. The production has grown to a full-blown musical, and all of the net proceeds will go to fund Preble Street, which operates services for the homeless.

Burstein says he consulted with some of the state’s top chefs in crafting the show, and believes that foodies and kitchen staffers will get a special kick out of the fare.

“The Night Kitchen” runs through June 17 at Portland Stage.

This story was originally published on June 8, 2017 at 4:37 p.m.