noah.jpgIt so sucks to be extraordinary. Just ask Pippin, Broadway’s most famous poster child for ennui. Pippin, in case you missed Glen Ridge High School’s spring musical this weekend, is the son of King Charlemagne. He knows he’s special; it’s the rest of the world that lacks luster. Pippin tries everything: war, patricide, ruling the Holy Roman Empire, love, but it all seems so ho-hum. Finally, the players devise a finale grand enough for his ego — self-immolation — at which point Pippin finally balks. Love will do.

This isn’t a bad lesson to remember when you’re trying to achieve literary greatness, and Amazon delivers a rank of 53,692. Maybe those Simple Joys — “sweet summer evenings, hot wine and bread” — or even seeing your 15-year-old charming the audience in a high school musical — can make up for it.

Wonderful to see the show twice this weekend. Amazing how much magic a group of teenagers can create. Here’s Noah, after the final performance, vamping for his mom. He didn’t play Pippin, but the Ben Vereen role of the Leading Player, which was split into five parts in a charming ensemble effort directed by Garth Kravits. Props to the entire cast and crew.

And wouldn’t you
Rather be a left-handed flea
A crab on a slab at the bottom of the sea
A newt on the root of a banyan tree
Or a fig on a twig in Galilee
Than a man who never learns how to be free
Not till the day
Not till the day
Not till the day
Not till the day dies!
— lyrics from “Simple Joys,” Pippin