The first musical I saw was Phantom of the Opera in 1991 or 1992 at the Pantages Theatre in downtown Toronto. The first musical I took my daughter to see was Matilda, in the same theatre in Toronto, now renamed.
I think the first musical I showed her (that wasn’t animated) was Annie – the 1982 version. I knew if I asked if she wanted to watch it she was say no, so I just put it on while she was playing in the room. The moment the singing started she couldn’t take her eyes off the screen.
And then I got to introduce her to more of my favourites.
I knew I had hooked her when she loaded Hello Dolly onto the iPad and watched it multiple times during our road trip last summer.
My first trip to New York was just about a year ago, after several failed attempt. Joe believed me when I told him that I needed to see Ben Platt playing the lead in Dear Evan Hansen. I did, I needed it. And it was an experience I will never forget.
When I got the offer of $49 tickets to see Bernadette Peters in Hello Dolly on Broadway, and I factored in the costs, I knew I had to come back and bring her with me. That was in February, and now here we are again.
In a year I will have seen seven Broadway shows – one of them twice. It took my 36 years to see a show on Broadway, and now my daughter has had the experience multiple times at 8 years old.
When her music teacher asked her which musical is her favourite, she said that with every new one she sees she has a new favourite. This was the case for me as a child – Phantom and Les Mis, then Tommy and Miss Saigon. (Not Cats, though, never Cats).
Today we saw Waitress, and I don’t know where she would rate it on her scale of favourites, but it sure did mean a lot to me. There was so much I could relate to in the show. But then I find that there often is something to relate to in this shows. We saw School of Rock this evening and I feel the same way.
Though the next show we see is Kinky Boots, and I’m not sure what I relate to there…