Sunday, October 12, 2008
M & M's at the "Fee-a-tre"
The M & M's are getting to an age when they can sit still to watch things like movies and shows, and not cause the rest of the audience to grumble and complain. Boy M is 4-1/2 and Girl M is 3-1/2. Boy M has gone to the fee-a-tre (his pronunciation) with grandma a couple of times. One such event was to the big fancy venue in our city to see "Go Diego Go". He often comments about his trip to the fee-a-tre to people who he has just met, so it must have made an impression on him. He launched into a full description of our experience to my brother-in-law and sister, this was at least 3 months after he experienced it. So I know he must have been impressed, because he is normally shy with people he doesn't know well.
Well, the show "Beauty and the Beast" was a perfect venue to take the M & M's to, because I was pretty sure it would hold their interest for at least half of the show. Girl M was totally mesmerized during the first half, at least until the inevitable "I've got to go potty" came up. But that was handled quickly before the big number in Act 1, "Be Our Guest" with all the dancing, somersaulting, twirling dinner objects started their routines. Boy M was wiggly, but he loved seeing the Beast every time he came on. We were lucky to have front row seats, with no one else in the row or in front of us, so they could wiggle, squirm, kick the seats and bother no one except Mom and Grandma.
The first act is long, about 1-1/4 hours long. It lays the story of the two potential husbands for Belle, Gaston the hunk, and Beast--the Prince turned Beast. This was a little tough for the little wigglers to endure, but a nice intermission and a walk around the fee-a-tre to visit the little girls/boys room, a quick shared drink of soda, a trip to the drinking fountain seemed to be all that was needed. The second act was more action packed, with the wolves attacking the Beast, Belle and the Beast finally interacting and beginning to fall in love, Garcon deciding to get the Beast and kill it, the fight between the townspeople and the enchanted objects in the castle, and the inevitable showdown with Garcon and the Beast. Garcon gets tossed out of the window of the castle, only to be seen again at curtain call (to cat-calls and boos), but the Beast is mortally wounded, and Belle professes her love for him. Then the amazing transformation began, quite well done and with great special effects -- a raising floor panel lifts the Beast, amid lots of smoke and lights. Then the he turns and steps off the platform as the prince, right before our very eyes! So, the last 10 minutes of the show captured their interest greatly, and they both sat quietly on my lap watching the whole spectacle!
I was very proud of the fact that neither had to be carried out having a tantrum, and they were both quiet for most of the time. Boy M was processing the whole story during the entire show, and kept asking me questions in his clear, high soprano voice, so I hope the next row back wasn't disturbed. Girl M can get pretty head strong about wanting to leave or do something else, but she endured. The entire show lasted over 2-1/2 hours with intermission, and they got through it. Passed a great big hurdle for Grandma, because I was pleased that it went as well as it did.
As we were leaving, the Prince and Princess (Beauty and the transformed Beast) came to the lobby in their costumes. Girl M got to talk to the Princess, The "Princess" icon is one she loves and she always wants to dress like a Princess. Boy M, being a little bit shyer, just watched as his little sister boldly spoke up.
I hope this will be the beginning of a whole new venue of entertainment for them. And it certainly is fun for Grandma to share her love of theatre with these darling little ones.