Recently i had the pleasure of performing as Theodore Laurence the III in the Haylofter's production of Little Women. This well known classic piece of literature now turned musical has engaged audiences on the stage since its debut in 2005. Through the tragedy of Civil War era life mixed with the humor of raising 4 very independent women; audiences are given a front row seat to the development of daughters: Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy. As the stage version unfolds, audiences were humored by grumpy Mr. Lawrence and his quirky grandson, Laurie; regal Aunt March, solitary Professor Bhaer, and resilient Mr.Brooke.
Through the production of this show I was renewed by three truths.
1. It's all about family. Marmee (Mrs. March) selflessly sacrifices daily to care for her girls. Through the ups and downs of sisterhood, childhood crushes, youthful independence which all eventually turned into adult realities for 3 of the sisters, Marmee shows us what it is like to be a single parent in a less advanced time. Despite the bickering over hand me downs, feeling less than pretty, and falling in love, Marmee brings it back to respect for each other, for God, and for self. Even when her own daughter passes away of Scarlet Fever, Marmee laments in the musical:
2. We could all be more like Beth. Beth, the 3rd eldest of the girls, journeys on the path one should never have to endure. Yet she embraces her fate, acknowledging her fear of leaving behind those whom she loves. Bravely pronouncing that she never planned her life out, she sings a final adieu to her sister.
3. True love is never truly how we imagined it to be, but you make it work. We see four very different imaginings of true love.
Louisa May Alcott provided that many generations would read this magnificent story. Jason Howland, composer of Little Women, provided that this generation would sing it.
"Love is Patient. Love is Kind."