PV Drama Puts on a Magical “Matilda” Production

%28Photo+Courtesy+of+Cynthia+Mindicino%29

(Photo Courtesy of Cynthia Mindicino)

Amber Chen, Opinion Editor

Based on the original award-winning novel by Roald Dahl, “Matilda the Musical” is coming to life on stage at PVHS this spring. Opening on Apr. 8, the show will run for six days, with additional performances on Apr. 9, 10, 14, 15 and 16. 

The musical’s plot centers around elementary-school level children, with five-year-old Matilda Wormwood as the main protagonist. As an exceptionally brilliant child, Matilda doesn’t fit into her narrow-minded family and is constantly mistreated by her parents, who clearly favor their ignorant first child, Michael. Matilda is nothing like her father, Mr. Wormwood, a con artist who sells defective cars priced as high as luxury cars, nor her mother, Mrs. Wormwood, who is a shallow and materialistic ballroom dancer. 

“I think Matilda is a very clever character,” lead actress and junior Mischa Kharrazi. “Though when she’s first introduced you may think she’s very shy and quiet, you really get to see more and more of her personality [as] she tries to get even with everyone who’s ever done her wrong.”

“She’s on a journey to do what’s right to her, and she’s discovering that the way she’s treated isn’t normal, and [the extent of] her knowledge isn’t normal, either.”

The students are faced with a formidable school headmistress, Miss Trunchbull, played by senior Sagan Barbour

“It definitely is very difficult to [adopt her mannerisms],” Barbour said. “I have to change the way I speak, the way I talk, the way I move– everything.” 

Miss Trunchbull enforces discipline through intense sessions of physical education and despises the children, often threatening to lock them up in a cupboard lined with spikes, known as the “chokey.” 

“I really like screaming ‘chokey,’” Barbour said. “That’s probably my favorite line.”

The children are not alone in their fight against Miss Trunchbull’s cruelty, however. Throughout the story, their teacher, Miss Honey, tries to push aside her own self-doubt so she can be a proper adult role model and stand up for her students. 

“For [Miss Honey], there’s a lot of intense subject matter from her childhood because she was abused, and that’s something I have to really tap into, which is difficult,” senior Chloe Blue, who plays Miss Honey, said. “I’ve learned to try my hardest to get into that mindset, but it is difficult to step into a character of that nature because it’s so intense.”

As one of the three assistant directors, Blue also has the responsibility of “being on book and making sure all the actors are saying their lines word-perfect,” and taking notes on everything the actors can improve on.  

“Focus and management of time and energy are such important qualities because they help things get done so fast,” Blue stated.  

Thanks to the long hours and late nights the cast, crew and pit have spent perfecting “Matilda the Musical,” opening night will certainly be a sensational experience, for both the production members and the audience.

“When we put it all together, it’s going to be so magical and it’s going to come together really well,” cast member and sophomore Emily Heinze said. 

Matilda’s bravery and willingness to take initiative against injustice at home and at school conveys the moral that everyone, no matter how young, is capable of changing lives. 

“It’s true that life is unfair, but you shouldn’t just bow down and let people walk all over you,” Heinze said. 

By expressing significant messages through layers of humor, from childish jokes to sophisticated satire, “Matilda the Musical” is a show the entire family can enjoy.