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 Post subject: Re: Introducing Family and Friends to Billy Elliot The Musical
PostPosted: Sat Jul 16, 2011 2:10 am 
Mr Braithwaite

Joined: Sun Oct 04, 2009 5:10 am
Posts: 745
Location: Williamstown, NJ
The following review gives us a clue as to why some first-time viewers do not understand or like parts of Billy Elliot The Musical.

." The production has been awarded 73 national and international awards including ten Tony Awards, Best Musical by the New York Drama Critics Circle, Drama Desk, Drama League and Outer Critics Circle. The cast of this national tour is across-the-boards superb. The story is completely compelling, the music by Elton John is fabulously matched to the setting and to the familiar characters of the popular 2000 film. The musical is way-longer than the movie. The pacing and reaction time needs tightening and the thick accents coupled with the Orpheum’s acoustics are often troublesome."

This reviewer really liked the show, but said the acoustics combined with the thick accents were his problem. Someone with poor hearing, unfamiliar with the accent, and viewing the show at a theatre with known acoustic problems would not be able to follow the show. They would need a pre-show briefing and, as much as the film seems to cause some people to dislike the musical's ending, perhaps viewing it is necessary. This would be especially important for non-British older viewers at the Orpheum in SF. If a copy of the screenplay was available to be read beforehand, that could help.


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 Post subject: Re: Introducing Family and Friends to Billy Elliot The Musical
PostPosted: Sat Jul 16, 2011 3:15 am 
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Billy
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Joined: Thu Mar 19, 2009 1:33 am
Posts: 17597
Location: Williamsburg, Virginia, USA
Well, if the accents are a problem, all I can say is that when the film first came out, I saw it three times in the theater and still didn't understand some of the dialogue because of the accent, so I really don't think that people who like the movie better can claim that they understood the accent in the film better than what is used onstage. Of course, if you watch the movie on DVD, you can turn on the closed captioning, and then you can understand the accent with no problem, so maybe they cheated a bit??? 8-)

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 Post subject: Re: Introducing Family and Friends to Billy Elliot The Musical
PostPosted: Sun Jul 17, 2011 2:17 am 
Mr Braithwaite

Joined: Sun Oct 04, 2009 5:10 am
Posts: 745
Location: Williamstown, NJ
This is my first suggestion for Friends, and Family to view before attending the show.

First, read about the history of the time

The real backstory
The musical "Billy Elliot" may be fictional, but the bitter labor strike that frames its story was very real. The young hero's father and brother both work in the Northern England coal mines of County Durham.

In 1984, the National Union of Mineworkers went on strike to protest a decision by Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher to close 20 mines. About 20,000 workers would lose their jobs if the closures went through as planned. Protecting itself against a work stoppage, the government had stockpiled coal after previous labor actions in 1974 and 1981. The '74 strike dealt a lethal blow to the government of then-Prime Minister Edward Heath.

The '84 strike began in March and lasted close to a year. Six miners (and four others) lost their lives in violent confrontations with police. Many others were injured. More than 11,000 were arrested.

In the end, Thatcher prevailed as the miners returned to work in defeat, the strength of their union broken. The country's coal industry continued to decline and was privatized in 1994.

- Steven Winn

Of the several hundred thousand people that were in the mining industry, less than one thousand remain today. The towns have still not recovered.


Next, view some videos about the making of Billy Elliot The Musical

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tuKd5cxd ... _embedded#!

http://shnsf.com/news/article.asp?key=1552&subkey=1368
Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.c ... 1JU929.DTL
f=/c/a/2011/06/23/PK5F1JU929.DTL&ao=2#ixzz1SH654I00

Next, check the Glossary

WORDS THAT MIGHT NOT BE UNDERSTOOD

cush/cushty = Something that is nice or good
bairn= child
bollocks = balls/testicles or an expression of disbelief "don't talk bollocks"
poof/puff = gay/homosexual
dee -do
kawnt- can't
ee-ya-ear
co-op = short for co-operative. A community food store where profits are given back to the members (yes, it's a socialist food shop but it actually has stuff to sell)

gents= short for gentlemen = toilet = bathroom/restroom for men
pillock = an idiot/fool/stupid person or somebody who does something stupid
tosser= see w**ker
w**ker= general term of abuse aimed at men interested only in self-pleasure
us = can replace the word 'me' in northern England
pasty= a type of savoury pie containing meat and potatoes where the filling is totally encased in pastry
nowt= nothing
mank = something horrible or disgusting
esquire = archaic form of address for a gentleman, used instead of 'Mr' when addressing a letter
like-like= means nothing. The second 'like' is just a learned speech pattern similar to people who add 'you know' unnecessarily at the end of sentences.
howay= various meanings such as 'come on' or 'hurry up' depending on context of use
iz = me
owld/ard= ???
wi/wor= means 'our'

PHRASES

airing cupboard- cupboard, often housing a hot water tank, used to store laundry
race whippets and grow leeks= activities enjoyed by people in north of England (whippets being dogs)
piss his wages up the wall= generally waste money, normally by drinking at the pub
mashed potato=assume it refers to the dance rather than the food
funky chicken= horrible naff dance beloved by drunken female relatives at a wedding
bent-as-a-Nine-Bob-note= Gay. A bob is a term for pre-decimal British money, specifically a shilling which equals 12 old pence or 5 new pence. There were 20 shillings to the pound and there was a 10 bob note in issue (i.e. the equivalent of 50 new pence = 50p). So, there was a 10 bob note but no such thing as a 9 bob note so if you got a nine bob note it was a fake/dodgy/not right/'bent' hence its use to mean gay (bent being derogatory slang for gay).
Why-Aye- Why of Course


HISTORICAL

wayne sleep= gay British ballet dancer
sindy(doll)= British version of Barbie but not as cool
camberwick green= 70's childrens t.v.show, very sedate
maggie thatcher= Conservative prime minister of UK. Loved and hated in equal measure depending on your politics. Determined to destroy unions and destroyed much of the industry which employed people in the north of England
michael heseltine= conservative minister in Thatcher government; Thatcher's main henchman in the miners strike
arthur scargill= president of National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) who led strike against pit closures

Finally, other northeast words and phrases
http://www.englandsnortheast.co.uk/Geor ... onary.html


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 Post subject: Re: Introducing Family and Friends to Billy Elliot The Musical
PostPosted: Thu Jul 05, 2012 2:50 pm 
Mr Braithwaite

Joined: Sun Oct 04, 2009 5:10 am
Posts: 745
Location: Williamstown, NJ
Since some of the links in previous posts are no longer active, I decided to post a more current link to a great site that you can view if you have not seen Billy Elliot The Musical. If you are taking a "newbie" to the show , have them view this promotion for Memphis, no matter what city you will be attending the show. It will increase their desire to see the show and their knowledge of the show's background.

http://www.orpheum-memphis.com/connect_ ... adway-buzz


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 Post subject: Re: Introducing Family and Friends to Billy Elliot The Musical
PostPosted: Thu Jul 05, 2012 10:13 pm 
Small Boy

Joined: Mon Jan 23, 2012 8:26 pm
Posts: 75
I'm letting my cousins view the Memphis link before we view the show. I'll let you know how it works out.


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 Post subject: Re: Introducing Family and Friends to Billy Elliot The Musical
PostPosted: Thu Nov 15, 2012 5:11 am 
Mr Braithwaite

Joined: Sun Oct 04, 2009 5:10 am
Posts: 745
Location: Williamstown, NJ
This is from the November review of Melissa Hall in Stage Write.

"Billy Elliot, the story of a young boy who discovers his love of ballet, is on stage now at the Murat theatre, produced by Broadway Across America. It was a treat to be able to see the show for a second time this year. Seeing it again gave me the opportunity to enjoy layers of depth I missed the first time around. I was able to get past first impressions and reflect more on the story and performances."

Not only should we make sure that our family and friends are prepared for Billy Elliot The Musical by reviewing the history and accent of the show, but, if at all possible, we should provide the opportunity to view BETM the second time. They will be amazed at what they pick up that they missed the first time.


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 Post subject: Re: Introducing Family and Friends to Billy Elliot The Musical
PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 2:07 am 
George
User avatar

Joined: Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:35 pm
Posts: 538
Location: Canada
Thats a good point. I'm taking my parents to see it for a second time. And I'm taking 39 other family and friends to see it for the first time!


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 Post subject: Re: Introducing Family and Friends to Billy Elliot The Musical
PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 4:18 am 
Mr Braithwaite

Joined: Sun Oct 04, 2009 5:10 am
Posts: 745
Location: Williamstown, NJ
rob_hanson1979 wrote:
Thats a good point. I'm taking my parents to see it for a second time. And I'm taking 39 other family and friends to see it for the first time!


WOW. 39 people! If you don't have time to brief them all, this is my favorite link for info.about BETM.

http://www.orpheum-memphis.com/connect_ ... adway-buzz


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 Post subject: Re: Introducing Family and Friends to Billy Elliot The Musical
PostPosted: Fri Apr 05, 2013 12:02 pm 
Mr Braithwaite

Joined: Sun Oct 04, 2009 5:10 am
Posts: 745
Location: Williamstown, NJ
accessmenj wrote:
This is my first suggestion for Friends, and Family to view before attending the show.

First, read about the history of the time

The real backstory
The musical "Billy Elliot" may be fictional, but the bitter labor strike that frames its story was very real. The young hero's father and brother both work in the Northern England coal mines of County Durham.

In 1984, the National Union of Mineworkers went on strike to protest a decision by Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher to close 20 mines. About 20,000 workers would lose their jobs if the closures went through as planned. Protecting itself against a work stoppage, the government had stockpiled coal after previous labor actions in 1974 and 1981. The '74 strike dealt a lethal blow to the government of then-Prime Minister Edward Heath.

The '84 strike began in March and lasted close to a year. Six miners (and four others) lost their lives in violent confrontations with police. Many others were injured. More than 11,000 were arrested.

In the end, Thatcher prevailed as the miners returned to work in defeat, the strength of their union broken. The country's coal industry continued to decline and was privatized in 1994.

- Steven Winn

Of the several hundred thousand people that were in the mining industry, less than one thousand remain today. The towns have still not recovered.


Next, view some videos about the making of Billy Elliot The Musical

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tuKd5cxd ... _embedded#!

http://shnsf.com/news/article.asp?key=1552&subkey=1368
Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.c ... 1JU929.DTL
f=/c/a/2011/06/23/PK5F1JU929.DTL&ao=2#ixzz1SH654I00

Next, check the Glossary

WORDS THAT MIGHT NOT BE UNDERSTOOD

cush/cushty = Something that is nice or good
bairn= child
bollocks = balls/testicles or an expression of disbelief "don't talk bollocks"
poof/puff = gay/homosexual
dee -do
kawnt- can't
ee-ya-ear
co-op = short for co-operative. A community food store where profits are given back to the members (yes, it's a socialist food shop but it actually has stuff to sell)

gents= short for gentlemen = toilet = bathroom/restroom for men
pillock = an idiot/fool/stupid person or somebody who does something stupid
tosser= see w**ker
w**ker= general term of abuse aimed at men interested only in self-pleasure
us = can replace the word 'me' in northern England
pasty= a type of savoury pie containing meat and potatoes where the filling is totally encased in pastry
nowt= nothing
mank = something horrible or disgusting
esquire = archaic form of address for a gentleman, used instead of 'Mr' when addressing a letter
like-like= means nothing. The second 'like' is just a learned speech pattern similar to people who add 'you know' unnecessarily at the end of sentences.
howay= various meanings such as 'come on' or 'hurry up' depending on context of use
iz = me
owld/ard= ???
wi/wor= means 'our'

PHRASES

airing cupboard- cupboard, often housing a hot water tank, used to store laundry
race whippets and grow leeks= activities enjoyed by people in north of England (whippets being dogs)
piss his wages up the wall= generally waste money, normally by drinking at the pub
mashed potato=assume it refers to the dance rather than the food
funky chicken= horrible naff dance beloved by drunken female relatives at a wedding
bent-as-a-Nine-Bob-note= Gay. A bob is a term for pre-decimal British money, specifically a shilling which equals 12 old pence or 5 new pence. There were 20 shillings to the pound and there was a 10 bob note in issue (i.e. the equivalent of 50 new pence = 50p). So, there was a 10 bob note but no such thing as a 9 bob note so if you got a nine bob note it was a fake/dodgy/not right/'bent' hence its use to mean gay (bent being derogatory slang for gay).
Why-Aye- Why of Course


HISTORICAL

wayne sleep= gay British ballet dancer
sindy(doll)= British version of Barbie but not as cool
camberwick green= 70's childrens t.v.show, very sedate
maggie thatcher= Conservative prime minister of UK. Loved and hated in equal measure depending on your politics. Determined to destroy unions and destroyed much of the industry which employed people in the north of England
michael heseltine= conservative minister in Thatcher government; Thatcher's main henchman in the miners strike
arthur scargill= president of National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) who led strike against pit closures

Finally, other northeast words and phrases
http://www.englandsnortheast.co.uk/Geor ... onary.html



This older post should help newer members of the forum.


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 Post subject: Re: Introducing Family and Friends to Billy Elliot The Musical
PostPosted: Tue Feb 10, 2015 5:43 am 
Small Boy

Joined: Sat Nov 19, 2011 2:42 am
Posts: 35
Here's a link to a video I made as a surprise for giving tickets to see the show to family/friends.... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cC1PxGgUI4

The first part of the video is an excerpt from an amateur video my Brother and I made called "A Tribute To The Modern Musical", where we featured various works by certain composers. That video was made in May, 2011. At Christmas time that same year, I took this excerpt and added the ending. I burned the video to DVD and played it on my home theater system for Mom and two friends.


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