Mama Mia (oops! here i go again…)

Posted: July 17, 2008 in All and Sundry, Musings
Tags: , , ,

And I’ll tell you a secret. Back when I was in elementary school, during recess while everyone was eating in the canteen or kicking ball in the field, I would often spend time in the playground where I would sit on the swing and sing “Chiquitita.” I would imagine that I was in a music video with cotton candy clouds as my backdrop, and I’m swinging up and down in a prairie dress, wearing a melancholic face singing “Chiqitita tell me the truth…” In other words, arte nako daan. I would spend those times alone acting like the playground was my stage. I remember that memory as a happy one.

So it wasn’t really a surprise that I insisted on watching Mama Mia in the movie theater last Monday instead of going to the pirates.

I don’t care if people find it baduy but I did have fun watching Mama Mia. It made a difference that people my age (my generation), like Ligaya, were with me because the entire experience became more memorable; the nostalgia heightened.

Pierce Brosnan’s singing in the movie wasn’t excellent but who cares, the camera loves him. I particularly am impressed with Amanda Seyfried, who played Sophie in the movie. I was shocked that she does have musicality. I’ve always liked her since the Mean Girls. Who can’t forget the girl whose boobs can tell the weather, “I think I have ESPN or something…”

But Meryl Streep really took the show with her. What commanding presence that woman has.

While the movie was going on, I often caught myself singing along (sometimes loudly) with the characters, perhaps to the dismay of some of the audience. I cried when Meryl Streep’s character sang “Winner Takes It All,” the best performance in the movie I might say, with “Slipping Through My Fingers” as a close second.

I grew up with ABBA songs. Yes I did. My parents were music lovers. All types of music. But my mom was the singer. My earliest memories of her are always filled with songs that function like a soundtrack of a scene/scenes in the movie of my life. It was through my mom that I’ve learned to relate memories with songs, moments with lyrics. She introduced me to the Carpenters, Billie Holiday, Barbra Streisand (yeah Fanny Girl!), and all the other lady musicians in the 60s to 70s, including Eva Cassidy!

So it wasn’t a surprise that in elementary, my life was filled with Billy Joel, Bangles, some New Wave stuff from the Talking Heads, mixed with ABBA. My dad listened to country and anything from Woodstock. I recalled he bought me a Jimmy Hendrix tape when I was in Grade 6.

So yes, Mama Mia reminded me of my parents (my mom most especially) and my family. Like I have always told friends, I grew up in the family “Vontrapp,” where everyone is expected to carry a tune. During family reunions, we are expected to be able to present a song and dance number. The first song I sang in front of an audience was “Tomorrow” from Annie, and gosh, I sang it during my Lola’s wake. At 6 yrs old, it was the most embarrassing, I want to hide under the coffin moment of my life then. I swore I would never sing in front of strangers again after that.

The next day after watching Mama Mia, I texted my Mom to tell her I love her. It felt good. 🙂

*photo of poster courtesy of click on it to be taken to the site.

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