I don’t even like musicals.
They make me laugh, to be quite honest: the idea of people walking around, minding their own affairs, and then suddenly, out of nowhere, bursting into song – complete with invisible orchestra – well, it sort of makes me want to do that in real life.
You know, get some speakers for my iPod. At the bank, when the teller asks me how much I want to deposit, burst into a little ditty instead of simply mumbling, like everyone else does:
(To the tune of “Pop Goes the Weasel”)
I’m giving you the last of my cash,
To pay the MasterCard bill
They told me if I don’t pay them soon
I won’t be able to use it till….
I pay them…
(okay, that last part we can drag out emotionally.)
What I wonder then is if the rest of the bank’s customers would join me in a perfectly synchronized dance?
That’s life in a musical.
So why, you might wonder, am I now Costume Coordinator (they couldn’t even call me “costume director?”) for my 12-year-old’s middle school production of “Oliver?” (Please sir, can I have some.. more?)
Because my 12-year-old has the misfortune of being cast as “The Widow Corney,” and thus was terrified of being stuck with an “old lady fat costume.”
“PLEEEZ make my costume, Mom,” she begged.
Having made – oh, lemme count – sixteen zillion Halloween costumes from scratch, including one stupid summer the YMCA camp decided to have Halloween in July, whereupon both my kids fully expected brand-new, lightweight costumes (I make the Halloween costumes WARM, having experienced too many of my own wearing a coat covering my fairy wings) – I said, ignorantly, “OK,” only to learn that meant I had to make all the costumes for 45 kids.
Last night was opening night.
I still have my sewing machine set up in the “green room.”
One kid split his pants – I was sewing in between acts. I still haven’t even seen my own kid perform, although the other kids say she’s great.
I’m hoping all the kinks will be worked out by the last show.
On the other hand, it’s been great getting to know all the kids. It’s been tough to get all these well-mannered kids to call me “Elizabeth” instead of “Ms. Bushey,” so a lot of them have taken to simply calling me “the Dutchess.”
In the meantime, I feel sort of like an Irish immigrant who really needs some labor organizer to come around and sign me up.
But when I saw them take their bows last night on the monitor, I burst into tears.
It was worth every stitch.