I recently got to see the musical Matilda and it was fabulous! No surprises there of course – but a funny story is that when my brother was visiting us last spring, I gave him the choice between Macbeth and Matilda…. and we saw Macbeth. Where Alan Cummings was essentially the only cast member… but I digress.
Firstly – the kids in Matilda are extraordinary. There is nothing like a six year singing and dancing his heart out as back up to the ten year old start in front of a full theater on a Wednesday night at 7:00 to make you question what you’ve accomplished in your life so far. But it’s also impossible not to love them. They’re so animated and endearing.
But the best part is the story; we all love a good underdog story (see Gladwell’s David and Goliath for your researched perspective) but imagine a good underdog story where the triumphant David is a ten year old girl with a British accent who can belt with the best of them… and uses her mischief to stand up for her friends, making things better for everyone. Some of my favorite lyrics:
Just because you find that life’s not fair, it
doesn’t mean that you just have to grin and bear it.
If you always take it on the chin and wear it
nothing will change!
Just because I find myself in this story,
It doesn’t mean that everything is written for me.
If I think the ending is fixed already,
I might as well be saying
I think that it’s OK!
And that’s not right!
So stand up, kiddos!