“Young boys should never be sent to bed… they always wake up a day older.”
I love being a mother. Raising my daughter is the greatest joy of my life. Since Edith came into the world, colors are more vibrant, food tastes richer, and a spring breeze is somehow more refreshing. But amidst the fun, there is also a deep sadness. Every parent feels it. Behind the ear-to-ear grins and the uncontrollable giggles, it’s there, like a dull seething pain getting closer to boiling over with each passing day. I can feel her growing up, and it kills me. Tuesday night, I saw these emotions come to life in song, dance, and whimsy at the Saenger Theatre. Finding Neverland perfectly balances this paradox: the whimsy of childhood and the tragedy of growing up.
Based on the movie of the same title, Finding Neverland narrates the story behind the story of J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan. The production strikes an impressive balance throughout the show, with humor and tragedy, cartoonish character actors and earnest principals, and a big pirate number juxtaposed to a somber ballad. Appropriately, the children in the cast were heavily featured and were notably the most impressive ensemble of child actors I have seen on a live stage. It seems this show was designed to be fun for the young and young at heart. With Mother’s Day fast approaching, head down to the Saenger and see it with the whole family. (Ironic spoiler alert: The mother dies in the end… Just keep that in mind before billing it as a tribute to Mom. #awkward)