…that still haunts me to this day.
I was in the shower yesterday thinking about posting and posing the question of if you could be one character in one musical which would you be? (you would automatically get the talent to do it). Then I started thinking about which character I would pick. I considered Eliza from Hamilton (too many lyrics, would def mess it up), Elle Woods from Legally Blonde (that would be a fun musical to be multiple times), Satine from Moulin Rouge (especially if it’s opposite Aaron Teveit). Then the role of Diana Goodman from Next to Normal popped into my head. I thought No because it is so sad and would so difficult to act out every night. Then my mind wandered to the musical as a whole (fun fact – in the OG cast I would still be performing with Aaron Tveit).
If you have never seen Next to Normal, please stop reading because there are spoilers. It is a play about grief and mental illness. Diana Goodman is a mother dealing with mental illness that started when her young son died unexpectedly. You don’t know he is dead until about 3 songs into the play because you see his teenage character, because Diana Goodman is seeing/hallucinating him as a teenager, as if he had not died. You see how the death and her mental illness affects her husband and her daughter (they had after their son passed). The music is beautiful and the topic is serious. It haunts me to this day – in good and bad ways. It evokes a lot of feelings and thought about mental illness in general, which most people aren’t comfortable with (even though I hope we will be one day). But simply addressing the topic in a Broadway musical definitely made it something to talk about, which is great and brave. Super Boy and the Invisible Girl especially stuck with me. I’m Alive of course was amazing.
If you get the chance to see it, please do. It’s great. Just be prepared for what it will bring up emotionally in and around you.