At the opening of their latest show (great show, by the way!), Cappuccino Musical Theatre announced the show they are doing next season – Heathers the Musical. Its a musical that is based on one of the most influential films of my teenage years, Heathers.
Now, I was never a Pretty in Pink [waves at AvD] kinda girl. I was a bit too young. And while I learned to appreciate his voice for teenagers of the 1980s, John Hughes’ flicks felt too artificial.. too “perfect” to me. They never (with the exception of The Breakfast Club) spoke to my high school and teenage experience. There wasn’t enough darkness or angst to them. Not enough pain. But when Heathers (and Pump Up the Volume)* came along, they were like a lightning rod for my experience.
Being a teenager was hard. There was a lot more darkness and pain involved in the average teenage experience that what Hughes was putting on the screen. So I couldn’t identify myself in any of his characters, but then along comes Veronica Sawyer and Nora Diniro, and I could see myself in them in so many ways.
While I didn’t accidentally murder a bunch of popular kids nor did I help avoid the FCC and the fuzz, each of those characters faced similar day-to-day challenges of navigating social circles, acceptance, embracing their weirdness and their awesome, and worrying about the difficult transition from being a child to being an adult and they did it with a dark sense of humour and sensitivity that really spoke to 14 year old me.
Hell, I even looked a lot like Nora Diniro for much of my high school experience. I couldn’t really pull off a Veronica Sawyer – I was too much of an art nerd. So Nora was more my jam. But I digress.
So fast forward almost 30 years (!!?!), and Cappuccino announces their next show and I just about died.
In the three years that I have been doing community theatre, I have never – not once – been this excited about a show. Of course, that isn’t to say that I am not usually excited about the shows I work on. I am. But this show? Man! My heart grows five sizes when I think about being a part of the team. As soon as I found out, I started to accost the Powers That Be into letting me be a part of it. And it looks like I will be! I am just not 100% sure what I will be doing on the show. There are discussions that need to take place with one of my favourites, CB.
And I know some of you are like “Heathers? As a musical? Pass!” But you need to listen to the music. Seriously.
If you listen to the music, and it doesn’t conjure up images of the flick, then there is seriously something wrong with you. Under normal circumstances, I don’t really pay attention to the music in the musicals that work. I mean, I either like it or I don’t, but I am not a musical aficionado like some people I know. But this? Love it.
Heathers the Musical!? YAY!
*Yah, I totally had a Christian Slater thing. Still do really.