Kids love a musical. Whether it’s one of the animated Disney classics from yesteryear such as Lady and the Tramp or The Jungle Book or the modern day Disney films such as The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast and of course, Frozen kids love them. And as they grow older their tastes will change and they may switch from liking the animated ones to watching things like The Muppets and then High School Musical.
And then, when they become young adults, their taste may change again, and they will fall in love with Broadway and West-End style musicals, also known as musical theatre.
I am a fan of musicals with my all time favourite being Les Misérables; I have seen at the theatre twice, I own two different soundtracks on CD of live productions, I saw the 2012 movie twice and have a DVD of one of the products. Oh, and I also bought a 24601 tshirt at the last live production I saw. Yes, I am definitely a fan.
Recently as I was driving to see a client for work I was travelling behind a taxi that had one of the mini billboards on the back and it was advertising the latest production of Fiddler in the Roof which at the time was making its way around the country. For some reason that I can’t explain, my mind read “Fiddler” as “Toddler” which of course made the title of this musical Toddler on the Roof. Like I said, I can’t explain why my brain did that, but it gave me a chuckle. It’s always good to make yourself laugh, right?
So with that, I present to you my list of musicals that parents can relate to…
Toddler on the Roof
Based on Fiddler on the Roof by Bock and Harnick
With numbers such as “Messmaker, Messmaker,” “If I Were A Rich Dad,” “Sunrise, Sunset (The Tantrum Song),” “The Sippy Cup Dance,” “Now I Hate Everything,” and “Do You Love Me? (Or Are You Sucking Up To Get Your Way?)” parents will be able to relate to this musical, especially the part where the child climbs on top of the roof and then jumps off. Spoiler alert: it’s all done with wires.
The Sound of Mucus
Based on The Sound of Music by Rodgers and Hammerstein
This is the story of a nanny who is dealing with seven sick kids. Songs included in this musical are “The Sound of Mucus,” “(How Do You Solves A Problem Like) Diarrhea,” “Do-Re-Me-Me-Me,” “So Long, Farewell (The Extremely Long Bedtime Song),” “Climb Ev’ry Bit of Furniture,” and “No Way to Stop It (The Projectile Vomit Song).” You’ll be singing along with joyful delight while feeling a little under the weather yourself.
Of course, everyone’s favourite number from this musical has to be the one that’s sung to the tune of My Favourite Things…
“Coughing and sneezing and wheezing and spewing,
Trips to the toilet, what’s with all this pooing?
Coughing up phlem that’s gooey and thick
These are a few things that make me feel sick…”
Based on Jonathan Larson’s RENT
If you’ve seen the musical RENT you know that it tells the story of a group of impoverished young artists struggling to survive and create a life in New York City’s East Village in the thriving days of Bohemian Alphabet City, under the shadow of HIV/AIDS.
The musical PARENT It tells the story of a group of impoverished single parents struggling to survive and create a life in New York City’s East Village in the thriving days of Bohemian Alphabet City, under the shadow of whooping cough.
Based on Cats by Andrew Lloyd Webber
This musical is about how kids act just like cats. The story line shows how they love be waited on, they want so much from you and give little in return other then their once in a while telling you they love you, and how they like to break everything around the house and then act all innocent like it wasn’t their fault.
Songs include “Jelly Songs for Jelly Loving Kids,” “The Naming of Kids,” “The Invitation to the Jelly Themed Party,” “The Old Grumpy Dad,” “The Aweful Battle of Youngest and the Eldest,” “Another Song About Jelly,” “The Moments of Happiness,” and “My Cavity.”
Of course the most popular and memorable (excuse the pun) is the song Memory. It is sung by a mother, a one-time glamorous woman who is now only a shell of her former self due to the late night feeds and waking up several times per night. The song is a nostalgic remembrance of her glorious past and a declaration of her wish to start a new life once her kids start sleeping through the night.
Based on Cameron Mackintosh’s Les Misérables by Schönberg, original French lyrics by Boublil and Natel, English adaptation by Kretzmer.
It would be remiss of me if I didn’t include this musical. This musical is about a bunch of miserable teenagers who build barricades to protest about something that only the teenagers seem to care about. Set in France, the music is a mix of 18th Century French classical music mixed in with Europop.
The titles of The Miserables numbers do not need to be changed all that much to be songs that teenagers will sing, and that their parents can definitely relate to.
Songs include “(We Don’t Want to Do) Work Song,” “What have I Done (to Deserve Being Grounded)?,” “Who Am I? (A song about finding oneself),” “The Confrontation,” “(You’re Not the) Master of the House,” “Look Down,” “Do You Hear the Children Whinge?,” “(Why Do I Have to Wait) One Day More?),” “Little People,” “(You Are Not Allowed to) Drink With Me,” “Bring Her Home (On Time),” and “Empty Chairs at the Dinner Table.”
One of my favourite songs has to be On My Own…
“On my own
I’m grounded in my bedroom
I don’t have any wi-fi
I can’t log onto Facebook
And when I go to school tomorrow
I won’t know the gossip…”
Which is your favourite musical, and how could it be adapted to be one that parents can relate to?