Watching this show felt like watching my own doubts, thoughts and fears play out on stage, accompanied by a mutual love for musicals and theatre. There’s so much unnecessary pressure put onto young people today through social media, peer pressure, career fame, unattainable ideals and misguided goals constantly being thrown at us via the media, society and our own friends and family as we strive to keep up with modern life.
We have to know what we want to study, what career we want by 16 and if we don’t work it out by 30 it’s too late. We have to be good at everything, to live up to our own expectations and societal pressure. The dream career, ideal life and world you visualised living in at sixteen slowly slips away into something different entirely but that is also a good thing.
This show explores this, in an arc that is both wonderfully hilarious and fun at the start before becoming serious and emotional by the end. It’s a medley of musicals rewritten and repurposed to suit modern life and to reflect the actor’s own life. Everything from Sound of Music to Mary Poppins (obviously) it was a love affair with Julie Andrews but also picking apart the perfect image and idol presented in these movies and exposing reality. If you are a musical fan like me you will love it.
The show also invites you to explore your own life. What are your favourite things? What did you want to do at 16? Did you achieve your dream? Will you? Can you? This performance takes our doubts and worries, turning them into positive realities. A new version of ‘favourite things’ is drafted on the spot with audience interests and hobbies and we all join in singing along. Rather than simply providing affirmations or telling ourselves mantras to become better which we never truly believe, we must accept who we are and being yourself - wherever you are on your journey - is simply perfect. It’s not a race, there’s never a time limit. You should never stop doing something you love or something that makes you happy. It’s not about being successful, it’s about enjoying what you do and exploring your passion. As long as you’re doing what’s best for you, at your pace and being yourself, life is good. These are words we should all live by whilst we sing along to a musical or two.
We also ran an interview with Rosie Williamson, and you can read that here.