I have a bias here, and an agenda: I love live theater. I want them to love it. We're easing them in with musicals.
They have an idea of what to expect because we regularly attend performances at the various excellent children's theater venues around the area. But this wasn't children's theater. The show was two hours long; the lights were low; the patrons were quiet and attentive.
I took E to see a show of Annie at this same theater a couple of months ago and she did great. But this was L's first show of this kind. More than one adult looked at me askance when I mentioned over the past week that I'd be taking my three-year-old to a performance here.
We were prepared. We had tickets to the matinee seating. She knew the music and walked in with a full belly. But L is our quicksilver child; you never know quite what to expect.
The lights dimmed and she sang the opening song quietly along with the cast. She sat on the edge of her seat, open-mouthed and rapt, for nearly the entire performance.
Toward the end as she grew tired, she rested her head on my forearm on the armrest but she wouldn't climb in my lap. She said she had to be able to dance in her chair.
It was one of those activities where everything went as well as a mama could dream.** We had such a fun afternoon together and I know there will be more theater tickets in our future.
**We'll just gloss over the activity's closing credits when the show ended, the house lights came on, we stood up to leave, and I folded up L's seat so we could walk out. Then she flipped out that I folded her chair for her when she wanted to fold it up herself, and lay down on the ground under the chairs so that the other 14 patrons of Mezzanine Row B had to hop into either Row A or Row C to depart. I guess we weren't entirely prepared, after all: I never held The Discussion on Folding Seat Etiquette. We'll be sure to add that to the prep list for next time.