In light of the tragic kidnapping of hundreds of young schoolgirls
recently, taken from their schools, you may wish to escape from our
current reality. Once you hear that the evil men, who are part of the
Nigerian “Taliban,’ are threatening to sell those girls and possibly
force them into ‘prostitution’ or to become child ‘wives’…
We all may wish to return to “Neverland!”
I was channel surfing between the semi-finals on “The Voice,” and
the fun, musical show, “Glee,” when I spotted Tim Conway and a few
other elderly, fine actors. “Glee” has been located in New York City,
since the members have graduated from high school and are pursuing
their theater dreams.
I noticed Tim Conway amidst a scene of nursing home residents, a
special retirement home for past performers. The young, thin man
in “Glee’s” cast, who has an excellent voice, was needed since
the person who had been cast as “Peter Pan” in the nursing home’s
theater production had, unfortunately, just passed away. In a rather
bizarre setting, too. The character who was playing “Peter Pan” was
in his ‘flying gear,’ having died while suspended in his harness.
I was mentally whisked away to the days when musicals were played
on my parents’ stereo. I felt like I was listening to Mary Martin
singing, in her role as “Peter Pan.” I was so happy that I ‘stayed’
(and did not flip back to watch, “The Voice,”) with the “Glee” show,
in its Season Finale. When I discovered the scene where one elderly
woman, a reoccurring role as “Maggie” I wanted to see who the actress
was. Her name is June Squibb, and she was singing “Wendy’s” role. At
some time in her young life, she had actually portrayed, (shown in a
brief back and forth camera shot movement from the stage to the nursing
home’s bulletin board with real photos of the original theater roles)
the youngest of the “Darling” family. The showed June Squibb, as a cute
little girl with a bow in her page boy haircut.
Kurt (Chris Colfer) has visited Maggie, the elderly woman who lives in
this retirement home, a few times before this show. Maggie’s character is
of a past Broadway legend, who encourages Kurt, when he has been challenged
by being turned down for try-outs. Last night, he had been ‘shot down’ by
his friend, Rachel (played by Lea Michelle), not able to be included in a
simple fundraiser for a dog pound.
Each time the camera panned back and forth from the present older aged
adult in the cast or audience watching the home’s production, they would
go back to the bulletin board black and white photograph. I took a quick
glance at the older person and tried to imagine them in the roles while
In my Roger and Ebert Movie Reviews Guidebook, they accidentally list
“Tom” Conway, instead of Tim Conway, as the man who voiced the part of the
“Narrator,” in the 1953 animated “classic” version of “Peter Pan.”
Do you know why? Because Tim Conway was born Thomas Daniel Conway!
He used his real, birth name in the cartoon version of “Peter Pan!”
An ‘Extra Bonus Fact’ about Tim Conway is that he was born in
Willoughby, Ohio on 12/15/1933. Go Ohio!
Tim Conway wears a crocodile costume in the “Glee” version of the
play and appears kind of senile, leaning forward with a rather goofy
expression on his face. This playful performance and his ‘take’ on
the older male character was quite endearing.
I remember in one of my theater trips in Cleveland, going to see, “Peter
Pan.” It was not with Mary Martin playing the role of Peter, but the
fine actress and singer, Sandy Duncan.
I will not go into the two different adult psychological directions
that have been taken from the sweet story of “Peter Pan.”
If you wish to know more about the “Wendy Syndrome” of the “Peter Pan
Syndrome” you may be interested in researching farther on those
subjects on your own.
I will let you in on a few more facts about “Peter Pan,” though. The
author, J.M. Barrie, did include the character of “Peter Pan,” in 1902
in a novel called, “The Little White Bird.” There is a lovely illustration
on Wikipedia from that book.
Later, it was published in 1904, as a play production known as “Peter Pan
or The Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up.”
Now, let’s sing together, “I won’t grow up, I don’t want to go to school,
for growing up…”
Wish we could all escape to childhood…
Maybe not the dangers of “Captain Hook,” his band of pirates and the
crocodile who swallowed a clock, though.