You’d be hard put to find someone who didn’t encounter J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan as a child. Read it, saw the movie, whatever. It’s a classic.
A new play, Finding Neverland, based on the 2004 Johnny Depp movie of the same name, and directed by the ultra-talented Diane Paulus is at the American Repertory Theater in Cambridge and headed for Broadway in March.
The show opened to mostly good reviews and friends told us that they had enjoyed it. However, our evening at the theater got off to a bad start when the 7:30 curtain was delayed an hour because of a last-minute cast substitution and some technical difficulties. The audience was grumpy after standing in the lobby for an hour.
That is until the musical started, when all was forgiven. For two and a half hours, we were enchanted. The dancing, the sets, the music, and the acting were joyous. We laughed and (I, at least) cried. Captain Hook, Peter Pan and the Darling family were characters we knew well. But Finding Neverland was fresh and captivating. We hated to see it end. We walked out of the theater grinning. Just like everyone else.
These are the moments that lift us up and let us realize how much joy we can experience, no matter what our age.