Billy Elliott

Way back in the month of March (oh my god how is it April??), I went to London with 29 students in 1e—students in the European section and a few others. My favorite part of the trip was the last night when we went to the Victoria Theatre to see the Billy Elliott musical by Elton John. The students had almost all studied the book and the movie last year, and I knew the film. If you’ve seen the movie, you’ll remember it ends with adult Billy preparing for and doing a show. In the musical, they don’t do this scene, but instead what one of my students called a “clin d’oeil” after the intermission, where Billy dances with an older version of himself to the theme from Swan Lake. At one point older Billy attaches younger Billy to a wire and he soars around the stage for a bit. I cried. I still almost cry watching the crummy videos on youtube. Obviously photography was not allowed but there ARE a couple of unofficial videos out there. Here’s one.

Here’s an official one of the show in general:

A lot of different actors have played and are playing Billy. Ours, like most of them, was blond, but it’s interesting to see in these two clips that they’re not exclusively white boys.

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