December 1, 2008

Billy - Take Two

We (Lani, Mike and I) had a second viewing of Billy Elliot last Sunday 11/23 courtesy of the goodwill of Stephen Daldry (read about our previous viewing here). This time our Billy was the wonderful David Alvarez while David Bologna played Michael, Billy's friend.

It's refreshing to see a different boy play the title role because they do have a different "take" on the role as well as dance skills. Mr. Alvarez' Billy is more timid, shy and unsure making him more torn during the scenes of conflict. It is when he starts dancing when he is released and just blooms. Mr. Kulish who we have previously seen, has more confidence. Even his stance is confident during the book scenes. He radiates this beaming aura during the show even more so in the dance sequences. I am not saying that I prefer one over the other but I do appreciate how different they were. Hopefully I will get a chance to see Mr. Kowalik too.

Billy's story, the dancing and the talented boys make it such a moving experience but there is a line in the show that always reverberates for me. It's during the scene when Billy and Mrs. Wilkinson are trying to figure our Billy's audition dance. She tells him that "dancing is much about discovering something about yourself as much as it is discovering something about dance itself". I love that.

Of course the rest of the cast were great and I truly enjoyed the show (this time with no technical issues!). And it's so much fun to see the megamix at the end as the curtain call. I know not a lot of people like it but this student of tap does!

Here are some photos from that day:

David Alvarez

He said he just started learing tap about 5 months ago!

Casey Whyland - one of the ballet girls

David Bologna who played Michael

Erin Whyland who played Debbie

And the very cute Matthew Mindler as the small boy. It was his birthday that day and the cast gave him $ for his present. Check out the stash he had!

It was our 2nd time to see him as the small boy


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