My son Logan and I went to see The Color Purple at the Shubert Theater in Boston on opening night which also happened to be my birthday! We were both excited to spend some time together, going to the theater, which we love. Being a family of four, my husband and I find it hard to always give both of our kids some special alone time, so I was so excited to have this opportunity to be guests of the theater.
I had seen the movie The Color Purple a long time ago. I remember it being a tough movie to watch, but also that it has stuck with me all these years. Logan had never seen the movie or the play and I filled him in on the general idea of what the story was about. For those who may not know, the play follows the main Character Celie, spanning 40 years of her life. Celie grew up with an abusive father and later an abusive husband whom she was told to call “Mister”. Finding love wherever she can and wishing that one day she might be reunited with her sister and her two grown children that had been taken from her when she gave birth, in Africa.
Logan and I went to dinner before the show and discussed some of the sensitive subjects that might come up during the play. These subjects are never easy, but they need to be taught and explained. I would much rather it come from my husband or me than anywhere else. I love that our kids feel comfortable to talk with us about such difficult subjects.
In the past few weeks, there have been a lot of stories about abuse on the news. I found this to be a good time to talk with and ask Logan his thoughts about the subject. He knew more than I realized, which made me glad I was talking with him. It also scared me that he already knew more than he should need to; however, that is a reality, kids talk.
We found our seats, looked through the playbill like we always do while checking out the cool minimalist chairs hanging as the backdrop for the play. Out step Josiah A. Spaulding the President and CEO of the Boch Center, Shubert Theatre, and he explained how excited they were to be able to bring the play to Boston. They have partnered with Rosie’s Place and a portion of their proceeds will provide support to 12,000 poor and homeless women every year! This was greeted with a loud applause from the audience. He also explained that he and Marty Walsh are looking to designate November 21st as Purple Day in Boston, to bring greater awareness to the subject of abuse.
The show began and from the first song until the last, their voices blew me away. They had a way of explaining the story that was easy for us to follow but that also made a huge impact on the audience. There were scenes that got people moved to yelling out at the stage or noises of disbelief. It was the most involved audience I have ever seen and they did not disappoint right down to the standing ovation at the end.
Logan’s favorite part of the play was when years later her ex-husband “Mister” came back as a changed man and was no longer the evil man he was before. My favorite part was the end when Celie was finally reunited with her sister Nettie and the two grown children that she had not seen since birth. As a mother, I can’t imagine what that must have felt like, but no matter the age the love was still the same.
The Color Purple was a vibrant soulful experience that we will never forget. With everything going on in the world today is was enlightening to hear the story of Celie and how she preserved.
The Color Purple runs now through December 3rd at the Shubert Theater in Boston. The musical is different from the Alice Walker's novel and is not as explicit. However, the subject material is not recommended for children under the age of 8. Visit http://bochcenter.org/thecolorpurple and enter code GLORY to buy your discounted tickets. Discount applies to select performances (11/21 7:30P, 11/24 2P & 8P, 11/26 6:30P, 11/28 7:30P, 11/29 7:30P, 11/30 2P & 7:30P, 12/3 6:30P ) while supplies last.
Note - We received press tickets for the purpose of this article. No additional compensation was received and the thoughts and opinions are that of the authors.