Bit of a rambling post this i suspect… but there is a point, sort of, to it!
A couple of weeks ago i had an email from a very good school friend who i went on to drama school with and shared a flat with for a year. Drama school didn’t really work out for me, but it seems to have done for him, because he has just started “calling the show” for the National Tour of Miss Saigon. Its one of those shows that was very big before and while we were at Central, so we got to see it, or its contemporary shows, a fair bit. Its one i particularly loved but the last time i saw it was the day i waved my best friend off to India for a gap year. So a long time…
It is, for anyone who doesn’t know, a modern day Madam Butterfly, based on the fall of Saigon and the very brief love affair of a local orphaned young woman and an American GI, who leaves in the evacuation unable to rescue her in time to take her too. Three years later, she is found with his three year old son, still waiting for him to rescue her. But by now he has married another woman. Devastated, knowing he has come to Bangkok to see her and lay the ghost to rest/help her, she kills herself, knowing he wil take their son back to the US and give him a better life than she ever can.
Anyway, i dug out the cd to play in the car and inevitably Fran started asking questions… so we covered the vietnam war, civil war, communism, racism, love, adultery, marriage, betrayal, theatre and real versus drama, love of a child by the mother, suicide… all on 5 year old terms! Its been a rollercoaster, not least because its an emotive storyline at best, but after last week, and coming to well loved music from my past, with the adult trappings of motherhood on top, i keep starting to cry while trying to explain it all! Even Fran looked a bit choked as the shot that kills Kim sounded out at the end.
Anyway, she asked to have the cd in her room to listen too and its been playing every night… somehow i fear that my theatrical inclinations were genetic! I feel bad in a way that maybe i introduced something with such adult themes.. .but i don’t really believe in coddling children, just presenting info in a “copeable with” format – and i guess music is…. Anyway, the site above has really lovely photos and video clips in it which we have been looking at today.