Taking 4YO to See Broadway Production of Beauty and the Beast

Updated on January 08, 2012
C.M. asks from Anchorage, AK
12 answers

The Broadway Musical, Beauty and the Beast is coming to our town- I cant decide if I should take our almost 4 year old daughter. She sits still in movies at a theatre- but I think its the popcorn! Have you taken your 3/4 year old to BATB? It would be her first theater experience. I would hate to spend close to $80 per ticket for our family of four, and have either myself or my husband not be able to enjoy the show.

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answers from Provo on

My high energy 4 (at the time) year old nephew went to see Lion King and LOVED It. My sister said he did really well and was so enthrawled by everything. I've seen a semi-pro production and LOVED it. I can't imagine the real show!

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answers from Seattle on

I think that you know your daughter best and if you feel like she is ready, then do it. Such a fun experience and I am all for exposing children to all forms of art.

My only beef with these huge performances is that unless you are closer to the stage, it is hard for little ones to follow. My daughter is a very patient child, who has seen a lot of theater for her young age of 5, but I have resisted taking her to larger performances because of cost of the close up seats and they tend to be very long. We opt for smaller, more kid friendly performances. Although this year, we took her to the Nutcracker for the first time and she loved it, but complained it was too long.

However, I have friends who take their young ones to see performances like BATB, Cinderella, Mary Poppins, etc, and they do fine. Fill your pockets with candy if you choose to do it. :-)

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answers from Seattle on

My recommendation is that you should not take a 4 year old. While I have not actually seen BATB, I have seen Lion King, and I don't think that it would be appropriate because the costumes, etc. may be scary, she may not like it, and personally, more than being concerned that you or your husband may not enjoy the show, the likelihood is that others around you would be disturbed by a child, which would be unfair to them....I do think that theater is a wonderful thing for kids and families, and there are generally many theaters that do productions that are appropriate for kids. I would check those out instead! I see that I am in the minority, but I have heard many adults (and have also been one with this feeling) who complain that their experience was impacted by children who were at theater and didn't belong. Just because something is based on Disney does not mean that it is kid friendly or appropriate...I am not in any way trying to comment on your child, I don't know her...I have two - they sit well, behave well (even at children's theater productions), but I just wouldn't do it!

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answers from Kalamazoo on

Go for it - and take some popcorn! (or some other treat you can fit in your purse and doesn't have foil wrappers) Does she know the story? I would suggest reading it together first, so she knows what to expect and can relate to it more. What a wonderful experience!

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answers from New York on

Me personally, I would not spend the money. I live in NY, so we could go in and see broadway shows but my daughters (4 and 5) would not appreciate it. They LOVED seeing Chipwrecked in the theatre and for my money, even just seeing a movie is pricey!
I spend money on 1) an annual children's museum membership. TOTALLY worth every penny spent. 2) Our annual zoo and aquarium membership. Also worth it.
This coming year when they are 5 and 6, I am planning to do Disney on Ice with them as well as the Radio City Christmas spectacular.
If the money is a non issue for you, then just do it. If money is tight, don't bother. Beauty and the Beast is being re-released in theaters 3D coming up in a week or so.

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answers from Seattle on

I would call and ask the theatre before you buy the tickets. We recently saw Cinderella at the 5th and when I received our tickets it said specifically - no one under 4 allowed in the theatre... I was a little shocked and thankfully my daughter was just turning 5.. but they certianly didn't state this when buying the tickets...

I think she would do great... My daughter has been seeing either the ballet or shows since she was just about 4 and has done really well.. We need to show our young people how amazing the theatre is!!!

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answers from Washington DC on

Yes, give it a go. Kids learn to sit through theatre by....sitting through theatre! Also, instead of investing in $80 a pop for all four of you, why not just have you and your daughter attend? That way, if she does get restless, you are not distracting the others. For a first-ever show I'd take her alone with one parent. If you have an older child who wants to go, your husband could have a special one-on-one outing with that child at a different show of BATB.

Also, if you want your child to see theatre...I'm sure Anchorage has local theatre and possibly even a kids' theater. Check into it. Kids' theatre is a fantastic way to introduce children to live shows and to the etiquette required, which is so different from, say, watching a video at home. My daughter has been to lots of kids plays, puppet shows and ballets since she was very small. The key to a good outing is to prepare the child beforehand (as someone else posted, be sure she knows the story so you don't get a million "Who is that? What's happening now?" questions as you're both trying to watch the show). Get to the theatre, not too early -- or she'll get tired -- but early enough to walk her around the theatre before you take your seats. Talk to her about how there are other people all around you so you have to be quiet to hear the folks on the stage.

And be sure you have that potty break before the show starts. One thing I know -- at shows with lots of kids in attendance there is always a VERY long bathroom line immediately before the show starts so get there in time! Have fun.

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answers from Philadelphia on

I took my daughter to see Les Miserable on Broadway when she just turned 3. She knew the music and really enjoyed the 3 hour show. I brought lolly pops with me in case she got restless. I would bring her. Have fun. Beauty and the Beast is a great show!



answers from Detroit on

I waited until my DD was five for pricier shows, and I have no regrets. I practiced with high school musicals, kid music shows, free outdoor dance music musicians, and high school basketball, football, volleyball and hockey games, etc. from birth to five. Since she's hit K, we've seen the special Halloween symphony concert and the Nutcracker. At four, yes, she may get fussy (but not likely with this particular show), but at five, not likely at all unless feeling ill. At five, I don't even worry about this issue any more. There's a reason K starts at 5!


answers from Eugene on

I started each of my children at the Nutcracker at 3 years of age. I took them to plays all the time and to museums in every city and country we visited.
If your child is quiet at the movies there is no need for concern about her sitting through a riveting drama like beauty and the beast.
Have a good time.



answers from Seattle on

My oldest has been seeing the Nutcracker every year since age 2 & saw Little Mermaid on B-way at age 5. My two youngest have been seeing Nutcracker since age 3 (boy & girl). This weekend, everyone (youngest age 4 now) went to see a musical production of Cinderella - a few months ago we saw Alladin (great!). Next month will be Beauty & the Beast. I usually take a few snacks for intermission (gets expensive!!) & something non-noisy in a non-crinkly container plus a non-spill cup for the youngest just in case (e.g., fruit snacks in a small tupperware). Never had a problem & husband and I always enjoyed ourselves! I'd go for it! Oh - and I think the best seats to get with young kids are first row upper levels (balcony, mezzanine) on the aisle - they enjoy the height and perspective with nothing in front of them (& no one to bother) and the aisle seats ensure that it's easy to make a quick bathroom escape, just in case!



answers from Medford on

I would take her. I work in theatre and the only way kids are going to learn to appreciate live theatre is to experience it! I've been taking my daughter to theatre productions since she was 9 months old. I've seen Beauty and the Beast and I don't think there would be anything too scary for a 4 year old. If children don't get live theatre, there will be no audience for it in the future and frankly, I'll be out of a job. I feel that if you prepare her for the experience and what is expected of her as a respectful audience member, she'll be fine. No one expects in a Disney performance for kids to sit perfectly still and silent through the whole performance. Even, if she doesn't make it all the way through the show, seeing live theatre is a valuable experience for all children.

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