As my little girl is getting older, now 4.5, I’m starting to introduce her to things that require a longer attention span. Yesterday afternoon we headed to Times Square to try to buy matinee tickets for Matilda the Musical from the box office. When we arrived, around 1:45 there were mobs of people, MOBS. I figured we didn’t have a chance. But we snaked our way through the crowds and worked ourselves over to the box office which actually had no line at all. I asked if they had any discount rush ticket left and they did! I felt like we won the lottery. We landed orchestra tickets for $42 each. These seats are in excess of $100 each so I was completely thrilled with our score.
The crowds were full of preteens, families and it appeared a couple field trips. There was a contagious excitement in the air and tourists and locals alike all shared the anticipation of NYC’s Broadway magic. As we were ushered to our seats I asked if there were booster seats available. The usher directed us to the back of the theater where I picked one up for my daughter. We also grabbed skittles and a bottle of water then waited for the lights to dim and the show to begin. My daughter has seen the Gazillion Bubble Show, Fuerza Bruta and the Radio City Christmas Spectacular already so was somewhat prepared for the experience. But I honestly wasn’t sure if she’d be able to tolerate the 2+ hours of remaining still or the subject matter.
The show itself was awesome. The child actors were adorable and everyone in this musical was incredibly talented. I was a bit unprepared for the content of the show, which was WAY above my daughter’s head and scary at several points. There was a lot of arguing, name calling and even suicide came up. I questioned myself a few times during the show wondering if I had made a mistake by bringing her there. She seemed unfazed by some of it but frequently questioned why people were being so mean. I have to admit I think she’s particularly naive for her age (as she should be) so perhaps some content was more perplexing to her than it could be to others.
During intermission I asked her thoughts of the show. She seemed to grasp parts but mostly enjoyed the singing and dancing. She was excited to stay for the second act specifically to see the song ‘When I Grow Up’ which was familiar from YouTube. When this song was performed I saw a reaction in her I haven’t yet seen. My little girl actually squealed with excitement. Absolutely mesmerized is the best way to describe her reaction to the powerful performance. Her eyes didn’t leave the stage and her mouth was agape in pure awe. I’m pretty sure it blew her mind. It was so cute seeing how entranced she was, my attitude about bringing her started to shift. The magic of Broadway was being fully absorbed by her.
Toward the end of the show she was definitely getting antsy and it was hard for her to sit still. She announced the color of her skittles a little too loudly a couple of times. Which was a shame for the others in the audience…sorry guys. When we got home that evening she immediately wanted me to put on the music from the show. Dancing around the apartment singing with more expression then ever, something in her was lit up. When her dad came home she jumped on him and told him all about the show exclaiming how awesome it was.
So, is this a good show for preschoolers? Probably not. The content was really sarcastic and quite dark. It’s a fantastic show but really written for an older audience. I don’t regret taking my 4.5 year old to see the show but I’ll probably pay a little more attention to Broadway’s recommended ages next time. This show is best suited for a mature 6 year old and up.
- You can often get discount tickets by going directly to the ticket booth day of the performance. Popular times are usually sold out so there is no guarantee you’ll be able to get them. Be sure to ask for Rush Tickets. Also come prepared with any coupon promo codes you can find online, they often honor these.
- Grab a booster seat in the back for little ones.
- I’m glad I had some snacks in my purse, these helped occupy her when she started to get bored.
- The content in this show is a bit dark, best for ages 6 and up.
- This show is LOUD so sensitive kids could definitely get upset by this.
- The music is phenomenal, I haven’t stopped singing it since we left.
- Read our review about the Gazillion Bubble show.
- Read our review about Fuerza Bruta.