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Anne of Green Gables- the Musical - Livin' the Good Life

Sep. 22nd, 2012

10:18 pm - Anne of Green Gables- the Musical

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Tonight I took a chance and went to see our local community theater's version of Anne of Green Gables. I was cautious and skeptical because I've read the book so many times that I almost have it memorized, and I was afraid that the all-important dialogue would be altered too much... and that I would notice. I also could not imagine songs being sung throughout that wouldn't detract from the feel of the story. But, I was heartily surprised. Much of the original dialogue was sung and they got it right. They really did. They stayed true to the story, and when things were occasionally altered a bit, the story and dialogue were actually improved! The girl who played Anne really GOT her. She got the enthusiasm and drama of Anne's character to the point that when she cried, I cried. When she was thrilled, I was thrilled. Pretty remarkable for an 11 year old with limited acting experience. I'm so thankful that I saw the play on a whim instead of letting it pass like I do with so many of our local productions.
As I was walking out, being one of the last patrons to leave, I lingered a bit. This was their final performance, and I watched them striking the set a little wistfully. And it began to dawn on me that I MISS our theater days. I miss hanging around theater people. They are such an energetic and colorful bunch. I loved how the theater made my children stretch themselves in all ways. I loved being involved from the sidelines. (I was in one play, a nun in Sound of Music, and I remember regretting it. The whole time I was on stage, I remember thinking, "This is hard work" and "I would much rather be in the audience.") I spent a good 20+ years shuttling kids to the theater rehearsals and performances. We practically lived at the theater. I miss the after-performance-late-night dinners at local restaurants. The managers always expected us and cheerfully made room for our large, boisterous group. I miss the parties after the final performance and that feeling of family that develops in casts. Watching our kids try their hardest to do their best and not let other people down... to be an asset to the play... was really gratifying. It was a truly FUN chapter of my life, and I miss it.

Comments:

From:(Anonymous)
Date:September 23rd, 2012 08:23 pm (UTC)
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I hear you. We still go to all the high school plays even though my youngest graduated 8 years ago. I love the reminiscent feeling I always get there. But I also usually tear up a bit each and every time because I can almost see my boys up there. again I would often attend practices. I so loved being involved and never realized how much I would miss those days.

I have never read or seen any movies, etc about Anne of Green Gables. I want to change that because people like you talk about it all with such passion. I need to find out what I've been missing.
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From:lestermom
Date:September 23rd, 2012 08:34 pm (UTC)
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I urge you to get the book from the library and read it to Elora. She's the perfect age for it!

Yes, I was tearing up both during and after the performance last night, just remembering. The whole experience with our boys and the theater just felt so RIGHT somehow. I don't know why.
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From:lestermom
Date:September 23rd, 2012 08:38 pm (UTC)
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Oh, and if you don't want to read the book, which is superior to the movie, get the movie.( It's a close second.) I'm sure you can get it at the library too. Anne of Avonlea (the movie) was excellent, too! I never get tired of watching that. Totally appropriate for kids Elora's age.
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From:(Anonymous)
Date:September 25th, 2012 05:10 pm (UTC)
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Elora said she already read the book and really liked it. Now I need to find a time to watch the movie with her. I had a goal to do that over the summer with her girl cousins but then my Dad broke his back and everything got changed around. I will shoot for next Wednesday since that is her early release day. I have no idea what these movies are about.....what is it about them that people like so much?
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From:lestermom
Date:September 25th, 2012 06:50 pm (UTC)
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.....the very charming, innocent, and lovable characters.... Anne in particular. She's a chatterbox with a big vocabulary and overly-active imagination. If you like it, be sure to rent Anne of Avonlea which is a wonderful sequel to the first one.
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From:(Anonymous)
Date:September 27th, 2012 04:47 am (UTC)

Me too

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Hey Darlene, I stumbled upon your blog through facebook and -- as I am currently re-reading Anne with an E at this very moment-- this post caught my eye. I'm a fan of the film (it was cast so well) but what I wouldn't give for a live performance of the Green Gables saga! There's something magical that exists between actors and their audience (and I'm sure Anne would agree :). But even more so, I miss those Hi-Desert Play House days too! I was one of the young ones who stretched herself in fear and hope, bonding with my fellow funny thespian crew. Of course I remember being in the trenches with Ben, battling all insecurities to rally for the team and dance our hearts out. Haha. But I also remember being even younger and wistfully watching the older kids from afar. Tumbleweed something. And Charlie Brown. Alice in Wonderland. How I wished to someday be that womanly belle singing so sweet and sadly on the stage all alone. It sounds so silly, now. Because how could a seven year old think all of these things? But at the time, I really felt those "big girls" were singing out the sorrowful longing in my own tiny heart. Theatre. What a world.

Affectionately,
~Mary with an I
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From:lestermom
Date:September 27th, 2012 05:12 am (UTC)

Re: Me too

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Hey Mary with an I,
Are you the Mary who just got married?
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