I have been trying to get this post up for over a month now but I was struggling with blogger and the photos. I am so glad to finally be able to brag about Philip and Miriam and this wonderful production of which they were a part!
If you missed the Staccatos' production of Music Man last month you missed a real treat. This was Philip and Miriam's first year participating in the annual musical put on by the Therapeutic Rec Dept of our county's Parks and Rec and I was so excited that such a wonderful experience exists for our county's special needs population. It was perfect from beginning - a prologue offered by Bill on his french horn - to end - the local high school marching band marching down the aisle playing 76 Trombones.
Philip played a boy and Miriam played a townsperson. Doesn't she look beautiful in her costume?! (she's the one right in the middle who can't touch the floor with her feet) They loved their costumes. Miriam looked so pretty sitting up with all the other women and girls. They sang all the choir numbers, Philip had a solo for Well's Fargo Wagon (forgot to turn on the sound again for the video - DOH!) and Miriam got a line to say at the microphone. Ben and his buddy Dan helped out with the crew - which meant they got to haul random set pieces around and be the gophers for the director. They were a great help!
I just can't say enough about this production. I have years and years of experience putting up productions and I have never been part of one this wonderful. The directors (one a teacher at the local Level V school for kids with special needs and the other a nursing home employee) were a perfect match for their cast. They brought so much fun and loving guidance into this with the perfect mix of understanding the needs of each cast member and meeting them right where they needed to be met. Each person had their talents show-cased in a way that was unique to them with a script that had been edited perfectly for them. One of the cast members managed to step up to the microphone and get out her one word - Wagon! - while the more musically talented - such as Bill on the french horn and Joel with his (and Philip with his) wonderful singing voice - got to share their talents in their own special way.
There was some really special community involvement as well. In the middle of the show, the Bay Country Gentlemen had sent a quartet of men to sing Lida Rose. They sang by themselves entering down the middle aisle and then came up on the stage and sang with several of our cast members who were so excited to be able to sing with this "famous" group. The local high school also sent some members of their pep band to play 76 Trombones at the end of the show which was another huge hit with the cast members. As parents we were touched by the time and talent shared so readily with our children.
I have to admit I was smitten with Bill who, in spite of the lack of "r"s in his speech pulled off a wonderful rendition of Pwofessow Hawold Hill of the Wiver City Bowys Band. He couldn't have been more perfectly cast! I invited everyone I knew to see this production, not because I was being generous to Philip and Miriam but because it really was, truly the BEST theater I have seen in a very long time. Those I invited who came thanked me and I'd like to believe they agreed. So if you get an invite to next year's production please, please, please - RUN, don't walk to see it! You are not going to be disappointed!