A local group is staging Hair and is offering cheap tix for their pre-opening night show. My kids, especially my daughter, LOVE Aquarius and IIRC it’s performed early in the show. So if they lose interest and we have to leave, we’ll still have accomplished my goal.
I’ve only seen the film (a looong time ago) and it was hippies in a park and being drafted and lots of jumping around and Treat Williams being hot as anything.
At the end of Act One, everybody gets naked. There is a song early in the first act called “Sodomy;” the lyrics to that one include “Sodomy / Fellatio / Cunnilingus / Pederasty / Father, why do these words sound so nasty?” There’s another song called “Colored Spade” which is basically just a long list of socially unacceptable terms for black people. If you try to count the references to drug use, you will run out of fingers. Depending on the staging and choreography, there can be a very significant amount of semi-explicit sexual content apart from the nudity and “Sodomy.” The plot doesn’t really make a whole lot of sense, either; I can imagine a 4-year-old getting very confused.
I like the show, and if it’s well directed it can be very affecting, but most productions contain all of the above, so you’ll have to decide on your own whether it’s appropriate for your kid. “Aquarius” is the opening number.
I’d check with the group/theatre first. They should be able to give you a pretty good idea of what’s what.
There is often a nude scene, but different groups handle it very differently.
Some groups skip it, some turn it into a sex scene. I’ve seen it done fan-dance style (i.e., nothing ever really shown), I’ve seen it done in silhouette behind a screen, etc. It just depends on how they’ve staged it. Personally, I think they should either do it or not, rather than trying to have a non-nude “nude” scene, but there ya go.
It could be a fine show for kids, especially ones too young to pick up on all the adult context, if their nudity level is something you’re comfortable with for your kids. However, there is a lot more adult stuff in it than just the nudity, so you might want to check it out beforehand.
I learned all the (non-obscene) songs to Hair in elementary school and loved them.
Stage production I saw had a lot of simulated sex, not just the big nude scene (which was a BIG nude scene).
I love the movie, but you should know – the play is basically nothing like it, except for having the same songs and characters with the same names. (I’m not sure it would have been possible to do a film version that was faithful to the play, which doesn’t have much narrative structure, but what do I know.)
I haven’t seen the play, but based on the movie, I’d guess that there’s some reference to large groups of people killing each other with guns, and even some people being forced to unwillingly take part in this.
I don’t know whether or not you think that only a stupid dirty hippie would find that more objectionable or unsuitable for children than people without clothes on.
As others have said, Hair isn’t really all that family friendly a show. But it also isn’t a show that holds up all that well, so you really aren’t missing anything. Buy them the soundtrack and you should be fine. Or take your kids to see Godspell if you really want to show them the hippie thing (it has IMO help up better over time, and the songs are better too.)
If they’re really interested in Hair, rent the DVD. Many of the musical numbers are nudity- and profanity-free (a couple have obvious drug overtones but may go over the heads of young kids) so they can watch those with no problem. The film version doesn’t have the mass nude scene and the nudity in the film is pretty tame. There’s a nighttime skinny dipping scene and a scene where Berger is changing clothes and drops trou and that’s about all that I can remember, except for Black Boys/White Boys which you’d probably skip anyway.
What I really wanted them to experience is the power of a live performance, more than that particular show - Y’know? Heck, I don’t even like Judas Priest or Iron Maiden, but went anyway because my husband wanted to go - and I had a great time.
I think it would just amaze my kids to hear something good, that they were familiar with, being performed live in person. Blow their little minds.
Later this spring I’m taking them to Porgy and Bess. ~~ Summertime ~~~
It’s not a stupid question. I was shocked when I viewed the movie version of Fame because I’d been involved with a high school production which was appropriate for high schoolers. The movie version was not. Or at least was less so (some students had seen it at the time). Much more swearing, much more sexual innuendo, much more racial overtones (although some of that came from the fact that our cast was 95% white, while the movie cast was a blend of black, white and hispanic people). And that’s not even mentioning the more adult themes which came up in the movie but not in our production.