The kids and I saw a special kids showing of Chaplin today. It was recommended for ages 12 and up. Rob had worked on it, and the kids had displayed an interest, so we decided to see it anyway. My 7 year old loved it, my 4 year old whispered to me about 15 minutes into the show “can we go home now?” Since it was a kids showing most of the audience either were children or had children. However, the seats that didn’t go to kids were still sold as regular tickets to regular non parent people. We had the pleasure of being behind one such group of ticket holders. This particular group of women clearly believed children did not belong at the theater. I had heard of such people before, but you don’t really run into them at shows like The Lion King or Newsies. Now although my 4 year old wasn’t exactly enthralled with Chaplin, she has been to many shows, and was behaving just as a proper young lady should (as long as you are able to ignore her closing her eyes for a nap during the first act, which I was since she was doing it quietly).
Never the less, we were still given dirty looks on numerous occasions. At that point I didn’t feel singled out, as they also shared their dirty looks with the 14 year olds on their right who kept giggling, and the 12ish year old on their left who kept putting his feet on the back of the unsold seat in front of him.
But when intermission came and my 4 year old happily announced “Yes! It’s over! Let’s get a cookie!” the lovely ladies in front decided to focus their efforts on us. I could hear them appealing to the usher about how unruly my children were being (I guess Mariyah was napping too loudly). They even complained about James, which bothered me because he had been better behaved than all the 12+ year olds around us and had only once whispered excitedly “That’s the table daddy built!” upon seeing a prop that Rob had made.
After a chat with the ladies, the usher began walking towards us. I had visions of us being kicked out of the show. James and I would be sitting on the curb playbills in hand with shoulders slumped and heads hung low. Mariyah would be happily consuming a cookie. Instead the usher upgraded us to an unsold box seat and, when out of ear shot, apologized to the kids for having to sit behind a bunch of crabby ladies for the first half.
I told the kids to enjoy it, this may be the only time they ever get box seats at a Broadway show.
(And yes I do kind of feel bad for the ladies, I’m sure they paid a lot for their tickets and had no idea they were attending a kids showing)