One of the things which makes me feel alive is the delight when a film, book or piece of music touches my heart. That first time of realising that this piece of creating is magical is like no other. Then for the next few weeks I cannot get my fill of it, I want to know all I can about its creators, the backstory of how it came about and to explore its meaning in more ways.
The Greatest Showman, the film based on PT Barnum and put into a new musical with Hugh Jackman as its lead has had this affect on me. I love watching the film, currently I’ve been to the cinema 3 times to watch it, (it was only released 3 weeks ago!). I look out for the extra launch pieces on TV or You Tube, hearing what the actors have to say about their experience and gathering more facts about the making of this film. I sing along to the music and taking extra notice when it is played on the radio.
What was so magical about this film?
The musical brings out the need to recognise each person as an individual and to love their differences to ourselves and not to the conformities to present day society. This is just as relevant today as in its setting in the mid 1850s. The musical concentrates on the Circus period of PT Barnum’s life.
It doesn’t mention his political career including becoming Mayor of Bridgeport in Connecticut or philanthropy passions, or his life as a Christian man. He was a member of the Fourth Universalist Society in the City of New York. This church was founded on the belief of universal salvation that emphasized the love of God for all people.
As part of his political career (a Republican for Fairfield) Barnum spoke out against slavery and the African American suffrage and here is a wonderful quote by him:
A human soul, “that God has created and Christ died for,’ is not to be trifled with.
It may tenant the body of a Chinaman, a Turk, an Arab or a Hottentot—
it is still an immortal spirit.
If you had to look up Hottentot (I did) it refers to a group of Khoisan people native to southwestern Africa. They were nomadic people.
Back to The Greatest Showman – is an uplifting musical concerned with the rejection of people who are ‘different’ from the culture they are living in or not accepted by society in general. One of the signature tracks is This is Me, sung with great feeling by Keala Settle and written by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul. The song has been herald as ‘An anthem for Outcasts” by Variety Magazine
It speaks of being put down and rejected by others and the determination of not accepting other’s opinion or cruelty by standing up and declaring with celebration the person who you were made to be. All of which is wonderful especially when realising that who you were made to be, is a creation by a loving Father—God.
Put simply, I can’t be Me, myself without God—to be The Me, I need to be part of Him.
Consider for a moment, who and what makes you, You? Who is the one person who always, without fail, accepts you as you are? This person is God, your Father, He has never failed you regardless of what you have gone through and no matter what has shaped your personality and view on life.
There is no need to pretend to be someone else and musicals such as The Greatest Showman are uplifting and motivational in helping us to realise this truth. The only difficulty in our world of Me, Myself and I, that we can often think we can be part of life without God. In fact in our own strength. We need to protect ourselves against this and realise that our uniqueness is important, we have a world full of unique, incredible people but we are still nothing without God.
Meanwhile, if you go and see the film, let me know and we can have a great chat.
NEW YEAR 2018
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It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and
do not let yourselves be burdened again by the yoke of slavery.
Galatians 4:1 (NIV)
To watch the broadcast on this blog click here or my picture below
PS As of February 2018 – Times gone to the Cinema to see The Greatest Showman is 7.5. Well the half, occurred when I got bored in another film (shall not mention the title) and slipped out and went into another screen! Now looking forward to the sing-a-long version so I can really sing at the top of my voice!!!!
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