There are certain sounds that always make me smile. Happy birds twittering in the yard (after I’m awake). The powerful crescendo of a beautiful song. The soundtrack to the movie Hoosiers. The laughter of children. I would bet that some may not agree with all of those items, but most probably can’t help but enjoy the genuine laughter of little kids. I got to spend my morning today surrounded by that beautiful sound.
We took our son to see the production of Treasured Stories of Eric Carle, performed by the Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia. It was simple, colorful, and stunning. And the kids there roared and squealed and clapped and laughed and it was awesome.
Going into the show I was curious what they would do. I’ve read “The Very Hungry Caterpillar,” and “Brown Bear Brown Bear, What do you see?” and I couldn’t help but wonder how they would stretch these very simple and brief stories into more than 8 minutes of show. But they did, and it was a good reminder to me that we adults don’t always have to be in such a hurry. They took their time with every moment of every scene and had the entire audience captivated. An entire audience of antsy, twitchy, short-attention-spanned children, mind you. And they made it clear from the beginning that this was a “shoosh-free” show. How liberating for all those kids to not have to be quiet, whisper, sit still, be proper, get scolded, and all that other boring stuff that happens when you go places with adults. They could laugh, point, ask questions, give away the ending, and no one cared.
Before the show, as we sat in the lobby and waited to find our seats, my husband made the observation that it was very heavily girl-populated. To which I replied, “well, that’s no surprise, look at who primarily attends theater events as adults?” And I have to say I find that so sad. I can say with total certainty that my son, his friend, and the entire rest of the little boys there enjoyed every second of this the same as the girls. I won’t deny that I enjoy playing, watching, following, teaching, and any other possible action you can take in relation to sports, and I see that my son is well on his way to picking up the same traits. But I also see that he loves to dance to music, and paint, and read books, and sing songs, and it is really important to me to encourage him to do all of those things too. It doesn’t come as naturally to me to remember those things, but when I do, it is so worth it. The excitement in his voice every time he has talked about since is more powerful than any motivational speaker on the planet.